AAFA Statement on EPA Cars Rule

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“A zero emissions future will make breathing easier for people with asthma”

AAFA Statement on EPA Emissions Standard

AAFA President and CEO Kenneth Mendez explains the benefits of the EPA's new rule on car emissions
AAFA President and CEO Kenneth Mendez explains the benefits of the EPA’s new rule on car emissions

Washington, D.C., March 20, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) applauds a new rule by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that will drive America toward a future with zero vehicle emissions. The move will help the 27 million people in the United States with asthma breathe easier. 

The EPA announced final national pollution standards for passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and medium-duty vehicles for model years 2027 through 2032 and beyond.  

According to the EPA, the new standards will slash 7.2 billion metric tons of climate pollution, eliminating the equivalent of all tailpipe pollution for nearly four years, and would prevent 2500 premature deaths, 5800 cases of asthma, and 110,000 lost work days. 

“Transportation-related emissions are a leading contributor to air pollution,” said Kenneth Mendez, president and CEO of AAFA. “Polluted air from these emissions irritates the lungs of people who have asthma and makes their asthma worse. This pollution also accelerates climate change by trapping warm air in the atmosphere. When temperatures are warmer and air pollution is high, studies have shown that there are more emergency room visits from asthma attacks. By reducing emissions from cars and light trucks, the EPA’s new rule will improve the quality of life for the 27 million people in the United States with asthma. We’re hopeful additional standards for heavy-duty vehicles will be announced that continue to drive us toward a zero-emissions reality.” 

AAFA’s 2024 Allergy Capitals™ report highlights the urgency of the climate crisis. The report notes that warmer temperatures create a perfect storm of negative consequences for people with asthma. First, the warm weather means longer growing seasons, leading to both higher pollen counts and more time exposed to pollen. For people with allergic asthma (the most common form of asthma), pollen can trigger symptoms. Second, the combination of warm temperatures and high air pollution makes asthma symptoms worse.  

“The rule announced today offers hope that we can stem the tide of climate change,” said Mendez. “We’ll continue to push for policy solutions focused on cleaner air.” 

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About AAFA 
Founded in 1953, AAFA is the oldest and largest non-profit patient organization dedicated to saving lives and reducing the burden of disease for people with asthma, allergies, and related conditions through research, education, advocacy, and support. AAFA offers extensive support for individuals and families affected by asthma and allergic diseases, such as food allergies and atopic dermatitis (eczema). Through its online patient support communities, network of regional chapters, and collaborations with community-based groups, AAFA empowers patients and their families by providing practical, evidence-based information and community programs and services. AAFA is the only asthma and allergy patient advocacy group that is certified to meet the standards of excellence set by the National Health Council. For more information, visit: aafa.org 

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CONTACT: Andy Spears Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America 202.974.1223 [email protected] 

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