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Greens cautiously optimistic about ARB smog plan - warn backslide could kills thousands
by Dan Bacher
Monday Dec 15th, 2008 4:36 PM
The Green Party of California says it is "cautiously optimistic" about Air Resources Board smog plan, but warns
ARB could backslide, killing thousands in state. Here is the Green Party's news release:
News Advisory

Monday, December 15, 2008
Contact:Cres Vellucci, press secretary, 916.996-9170 cvellucci [at]
Susan King, spokesperson, 415.823-5524 sking [at]
Daniel Brezenoff, spokesperson, 310.422-2211 dbrezenoff [at]

State's ‘Green' political party cautiously optimistic
about Air Resources Board smog plan, but warns
ARB could backslide, killing thousands in state

SACRAMENTO – The Green Party of California, the state's only "Green"
political party, cautiously applauded a bold plan by the Air Resources
Board last week to reduce greenhouse-gases and curb death-dealing diesel
fumes - but warned that the state in the past has failed to follow through
on similar promises.

"The costs of not acting quickly and decisively are un-imaginably huge.
These rules will eventually provide needed protections for the public. But
the ARB has shown it is all too willing to modify requirements when asked
to so by business interests. It is a shame that many of the people hit
hardest by diesel fumes are not able to testify, as corporations can,
because they're dead from the bad air," said the Green Party of California.

"Diesel particulates are suspected brain carcinogens. These small particles
can pass through the blood brain barrier and suspected to cause the most
dangerous and malignant brain tumors such as Glioma and Astrocytoma. It's
about time to start regulating trucks which are poisoning our air," said
Sara Amir, GPCA spokesperson and a manager with the California Department
of Toxic Substances Control.

The GP of California is sympathetic to small, independent truckers, and
wants to make sure they are given low or no-interest loans and other
financial incentives so they can comply with the rules, said Wes Rolley,
co-chair of the U.S. Green Party EcoAction Committee.

But, he added, the "ARB must be reminded that the ‘economic issue' they are
so concerned about regarding small owner-operators, while important, should
be trumped by the ‘costs' of $28 billion in annual economic costs,
thousands of premature death, 2,800 emergency room visits driving up
healthcare costs, 466,880 days of lost work because of air pollution
related illnesses and 1,259,840 lost school days which affect education
quality and cost our schools money they sorely need."

The Greens also said "cap and trade" doesn't work, and that traditionally,
low-income people in urban areas will continue to pay a big price for
pollution. "For the Carbon Trading process to work quickly, the cost for
carbon permits must be sufficiently high to ‘force' changes in economic
behavior. But Gov. Schwarzenegger and CARB chief Mary Nichols are not
willing to go that far," said Rolley.