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Public Statements

Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. QUIGLEY. Mr. Speaker, today the House will vote on yet another environmental ruinous bill. This motion would instruct surface transportation conferees to retain the language of H.R. 2273, which prohibits the EPA from regulating coal ash.

Coal ash is the toxic combination of mercury, boron, aluminum, thallium, sodium, and arsenic that is produced by burning coal. Shockingly, people living near unlined coal ash ponds have a risk of cancer that is 2,000 times greater than EPA's acceptable level.

This motion would disallow the EPA from doing its job. Allowing the EPA to enforce safeguards against coal ash pollution would help to avoid disasters like the 2008 spill in Tennessee, where a dam holding more than 1 billion gallons of toxic coal ash failed. That spill destroyed 300 acres and dozens of homes, devastated wildlife, poisoned two rivers--and apparently taught us nothing.

I urge my colleagues to oppose this latest attempt to bar the EPA from saving lives and preserving the environment.


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