NY, NJ And Conn. Sue Trump Again Over Out-Of-State Polluters

Steve Burns
February 23, 2020 - 1:11 pm
Coal plant Ohio

Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are among the states suing the Trump administration—again—over out-of-state polluters.

New Jersey Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel said states can move toward clean energy, encourage electric cars and do all kinds of things to reduce their own pollution.

“(But) all that work we're doing doesn't really get the reductions we need, because of out-of-state pollution. Failure of the EPA to do its job,” Tittel said.

Tittel said the Environmental Protection Agency hasn’t been enforcing what are called “good neighbor” rules. Those rules require the EPA to take action against states that don’t allow other states to meet federal air quality standards.

“What you don't realize in New Jersey is that a third of our air pollution comes from Pennsylvania and states to the west,” Tittel said.

He said this collection of northeastern states has already sued and already won, but the ruling was ignored.

“To go back to court again to get them to do the job they should've done in the first place,” Tittel said of the states’ goal with the new lawsuit.

The American Lung Association ranks the New York metro area as the 10th worst in the country for ozone pollution. Ozone is the main ingredient in smog, which can trigger asthma attacks.

“You can feel it in your lungs. Your eyes will burn a little bit. You’ll feel it in your mouth. It can make people very sick and even kill them,” Tittel said. “Pollution doesn’t know state boundaries.”