On Monday, February 2nd, California Interfaith Power & Light members and staff participated in an EPA Hearing on ozone standards. What is ozone and why is ozone a moral issue? Ozone also known as smog happens when chemicals and fumes from industrial plants and cars mix with sunlight and heat. The most endangered by this poisonous air are often our most vulnerable members: children, the elderly, and people who have lung diseases like asthma, leading to respiratory illnesses and unnecessary loss of life.
Executive Director, Susan Stephenson, Program Director, The Rev. Will Scott were joined at the Sacramento hearing by CIPL steering committee member Katelyn Roedner Sutter of Catholic Charities of Stockton and local congregation members Ann Rothschild of Trinity Cathedral (who is featured in this LA Times story and had a Letter to the Editor published in the Sacramento Bee) and Betsy Reifsnider of St. Francis of Assisi Parish each urged the EPA to adopt the standard for ozone recommended by health professionals — no more than 60 parts per billion. If the EPA accepted this standard, we could prevent approximately 1.8 million asthma attacks, 1.9 million missed school days and 6,400 premature deaths annually. To read Susan and Will’s comments click here.
Great creative Spirit of many names, who some traditions say breathed the world into existence, inspire us and those in positions of power today to use our own breaths for the wellbeing of others, to speak up for those who suffer the consequences of poisoned air, especially children, the elderly and those with asthma. We give thanks for the wisdom of medical professionals, scientists and other experts who help us know the importance of stronger regulations to curb smog and protect one another’s health. We are grateful for everyone who has come together from many walks of life from across the golden state today, to speak truth and support actions that take care of our shared home, this one planet. May the work we do together on this day deepen our commitment to seek the common good, not only for ourselves but for generations to come. In the name of Love, Amen.
To learn more about the EPA’s Ozone Regulatory Process click here.