Newswise — New York, NY – March 31, 2020 -- The Trump Administration’s decision to roll back emission and mileage standards for cars and trucks is bad for respiratory health.

Motor vehicle tailpipe emissions are a major source of air pollution and a major cause of climate change.  The Administration’s decision will result in the release of more air pollutants and carbon dioxide into the air by trucks and cars.  Air pollutants like particulate matter and ozone are directly toxic to the lung, and carbon dioxide causes climate change, which results in forest fires, more ozone pollution and heat waves that cause respiratory illness and hospitalization.

 “As a pulmonary physician and an air pollution researcher, I know that air pollution from cars and trucks is bad for my patients.  The research is clear:  air population from cars and trucks makes people sick, especially kids and adults suffering from asthma and other lung conditions,” says Mary B. Rice, MD, chair of the ATS Environmental Health Policy Committee.  “For the sake of lung health, we need to move away from our dependence on dirty fossil fuels and clean up the air.”

“The costs of adapting to climate change will continue to grow in the U.S. and the rest of the world if we refuse to invest in cost-effective mitigation strategies. Not only has this Administration failed to show leadership on climate change, the decision it announced today will result in increased costs for the public by making U.S. cars more polluting and less fuel efficient,” says Kevin Cromar, PhD, vice chair of the ATS Environmental Health Policy Committee.

“Industry has the technology to reduce tailpipe emissions.  What is clearly missing is the political will of this Administration to act in the best interest of the American public,” continues Dr. Cromar.


About the American Thoracic Society

Founded in 1905, the American Thoracic Society is the world's leading medical association dedicated to advancing pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine. The Society’s 15,000 members prevent and fight respiratory disease around the globe through research, education, patient care and advocacy. The ATS publishes three journals, the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology and the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.