But in New Jersey, of course it is!
Trenton – Today, Environment New Jersey announced a major online clean air accountability campaign, targeting three of New Jersey’s more moderate Republican Congressman, including Rep. Leonard Lance (R-7), Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-2) and Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11), for three recent votes that threaten public health by undermining clean air and allowing more air pollution.
“Everyone should be able to breathe clean air, but this bill puts tens of thousands of lives at risk by blocking the clean-up of deadly air pollution,” said Doug O’Malley, field director for Environment New Jersey. “We want to let New Jersey voters know their Congressman supported out-of-state polluters instead of standing up for New Jersey’s health. New Jerseyans deserve better.”
The size of the online media purchase is described as a significant 5-figure buy and is targeting the state’s largest web-sites – including nj.com – with banners targeting hometown voters in all major newspapers, a homepage takeover of PolitickerNJ, sponsorship of the “Wake Up Call” e-mail newsletter and targeted Google ads. Ads will be running for a week.
The House of Representatives approved the “TRAIN” Act, which would indefinitely delay the clean-up of toxic power plant pollution; another bill (H.R. 2681) that prevents clean air standards that lower mercury and other toxic air pollution from cement plants; and a bill (H.R. 2250) that would prevents standards to reduce toxic pollution from industrial incinerators and boilers at power plants.
The “TRAIN” Act alone, if passed, could result in 139,500 lives lost due to smog, soot, and toxic air pollution.* In New Jersey, it could result in over 3,200 lives lost due to air pollution. The health benefits delivered by the incinerator and boiler standards are as high as $54 billion annually, and the health benefits from cement standards will be as high as $18 billion annually.
All of these bills were voted on the heels of an Environment New Jersey report, “Danger in the Air,” that found New Jersey’s air to be some of the smoggiest in the country. The findings included that the North Jersey metropolitan area, including New York and Connecticut, ranked as the 5th smoggiest metropolitan area in the country this past summer.
Findings from 2010 were equally alarming. Rep. Frank LoBiondo’s district, (R-2), includes much of South Jersey, including the Vineland-Millville-Bridgeton area which ranked as the 7th smoggiest small metropolitan area in the country.
Rep. Leonard Lance’s district, (R-7), which stretches across central Jersey, including Middlesex-Somerset-Hunterdon Counties which ranked the 17th worst smoggiest in the country, with 17 smog alert days.
“Clean air should not be a partisan issue – especially when these standards will clean up out-of-state power plants. The votes by these moderate Congressmen are more than disappointing – their decision sides with polluters over our public health – and we want to let as many New Jerseyans’ know where these Congressmen stand,” said O’Malley.