PHILADELPHIA (Legal Newsline) - Three environmental activist organizations have sued the Environmental Protection Agency in federal court about air pollution rules it approved for Pennsylvania.
National Parks Conservation Association, Sierra Club, and Clean Air Council are challenging EPA's decision to approve Pennsylvania's Regional Haze State Implementation Plan because they claim it will not clean up pollution that threatens human health and natural resources in the state. They claim to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit that the requirements for "big polluters," chiefly coal-fired power plants, are inadequate.
The groups also filed a petition directly with EPA asking it to reconsider the action. A recent D.C. court decision said that Pennsylvania's coal-fired power plants are not required under other programs to reduce their emissions at all to protect parks.
The environmentalists are displeased, saying the plan falls far short of 35-year-old Clean Air Act protections, and will allow pollution to continue fouling air quality
"EPA's plan requires no pollution controls at any source - zero," said Charles McPhedran, an attorney with Earthjustice, a non-profit law firm representing the clean air advocates.
"It is unacceptable to allow large polluters to continue to dirty the air of our communities and our treasured national places."