Clear Skies would set strict, mandatory emissions caps on three of the
most harmful air pollutants from power generators -- sulfur dioxide (SO2),
nitrogen oxides (NOx), and mercury. Former President Bush first announced the
Clear Skies Act on February 14, 2002. Clear Skies legislation was first
introduced in both Houses of Congress in July 2002 and reintroduced in
February 2003. On January 24, 2005, Senators Inhofe and Voinovich introduced
their version of the Clear Skies Act (S
131) . The Senate Environment and
Public Works Committee held hearings on this legislation on January 26
and February 2 of 2005.
The Clear Skies Act would cut power plant emissions of these pollutants by 70 percent, eliminating 35 million more tons of these pollutants in the next decade than the current Clean Air Act.
Analytical data generated by state-of-the-art EPA computer modeling shows that nationwide reductions of these three harmful pollutants would have striking results: Every part of the country where power plants contribute significantly to air pollution, most notably, the Northeast, Southeast, and Midwest, would see vast improvements in air quality. Many cities and towns would meet air quality standards for the first time in years.
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