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Lung Association Defends Clean Air Act

The American Lung Association is hosting "Healthy Air Day" in Pittsburgh to back the Clean Air Act as a part of the organization's Red Carriage Initiative.

Initially passed by Congress in 1970, the Clean Air Act allowed the Environmental Protection Agency to set national air quality guidelines. The law has been beefed up since; regulating different types of emissions and air quality standards, but the association is concerned about recent efforts to weaken the standards. Earlier this month the U.S. Senate narrowly rejected an amendment by Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) that would have required the EPA to provide at least 3 and a half additional years to companies to comply with new regulations restricting mercury and toxic emissions from boilers and incinerators.

The American Lung Association estimates that the Clean Air Act prevented 160,000 deaths in 2010 and predicts that if the Act is not upheld, 230,000 Americans will die in 2020 due to toxic air pollution.

American Lung Association's Mid-Atlantic CEO, Deborah Brown, says that their research shows that Pennsylvanians are in favor clean air protections.

"The American Lung Association is asking individuals to contact Senators Casey and Toomey to urge them to support 'Clean Air' and oppose any attempts to weaken the way or block clean air protections."

Brown adds that this is the American Lung Association's first "Healthy Air Day."