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March 1, 2011
3:12 PM

CONTACT: Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)

Bob Keefe, NRDC, 202-289-2373,

Clean Air Act Will Save 2.2 Million Lives Between 2010 and 2020, EPA Data Reveal

Report Shows Law to be Effective, Economical in Protecting Health

WASHINGTON - March 1 - The Environmental Protection Agency’s report today, “The Benefits and Costs of the Clean Air Act from 1990 to 2020” confirms the Clean Air Act’s status as one of the strongest and most cost-effective public-health protection laws in U.S. history, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.

NRDC’s own analysis of the agency’s data shows that more than 2.2 million lives will be saved between 2010 and 2020 due to air pollution reductions achieved by 1990 amendments to the law.

The following is a statement by John Walke, NRDC’s clean air director:

“By limiting our exposure to air pollution, the Clean Air Act has not only saved lives but also vastly reduced cases of heart attacks, asthma attacks, bronchitis and other illnesses, thus cutting our medical bills – a huge drag on the economy.

“The study also exposes big industry’s decades-long habit of crying wolf whenever the government has sought to strengthen health protections, from tobacco restrictions to auto safety.

“Our public officials should be protecting our health, not polluters’ profits.”

EPA’s report is here:

NRDC’s analysis of EPA’s report are here:
Laurie Johnson blog:
Christina Angelides:

The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, nonprofit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has 1.2 million members and online activists, served from offices in New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Beijing.


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