400+ Scientists, Health Professionals Oppose Manchin’s Fossil Fuel Permitting Bill

WASHINGTON, DC — In a letter delivered today to House Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Schumer, more than 400 scientists and health professionals called on Congress to approve the law released yesterday by Senator Joe Manchin to reject the reform of the energy permit. The letter cites serious public health and climate threats related to accelerating fossil fuel development, which the bill prioritises.

The letter was written by well-known biologist and climate expert Sandra Steingraber, PhD [Science and Environmental Health Network] and disseminated in conjunction with Food & Water Watch. First signatories include well-known health and climate expert Peter Kalmus, PhD [UCLA]Robert W. Howarth, PhD [Cornell Univ.]Philip Landrigan, MD [Boston Col.], Farhana Sultana, PhD [Syracuse Univ.]Ted Schettler MD, MPH [Science & Environmental Health Network]Michael E Mann, PhD [Univ. of Penn.]Barbara Sattler, RN, DrPH, FAAN [Univ. of San Fran.]Mark Jacobson, PhD [Sanford Univ.]and Katie Huffling, DNP, RN, CNM, FAAN [Physicians for Social Responsibility].

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The letter states in part:

Fossil fuel projects also pose enormous public health risks, which include not only multiple widespread health effects of an overheated climate, but also direct harm to those close to them. As now documented in more than 100 studies, harms to health associated with living near oil and gas wells and associated infrastructure include asthma, heart problems, early death and impaired infant health… More than 17.6 million US citizens live within a mile of an active oil or gas well. Our patients are among these Americans.

“The climate crisis is a public health crisis that is affecting those living on the frontlines of oil and gas exploration the most. Scientists who document the evidence of harm and healthcare professionals who treat the harm are now speaking with one voice,” he said Sandra Steingraber, PhD, senior scientist at the Science and Environmental Health Network and author of the letter. “We are calling on House Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Schumer to reject Senator Manchin’s dirty deal that will accelerate further fossil fuel expansion.”

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“Having spent more than 50 years protecting children from environmental health threats, I feel compelled to speak out against any political deal that would expose them to more pollution from fossil fuels for decades,” he said dr Philip Landrigan, pediatrician and director of the Global Public Health Program and Global Observatory on Planetary Health at the Schiller Institute. “Fossil fuel extraction harms prenatal development. Burning fossil fuels causes premature birth, stillbirth and childhood asthma. The single most effective strategy to protect our children from these dangers is a rapid transition to clean, renewable energy and away from fossil fuels. The sooner the better.”

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Yesterday, Senator Manchin released the text of his much-anticipated reform legislation authorizing energy, which Senator Schumer intends to attach to a “must-pass” resolution on the budget before the end of September.

Contact: Seth Gladstone- [email protected]

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