Community leaders call on representative Meehan to oppose the Trump administration’s dirty energy agenda

Redacción Agencias | 7/31/2017, 5:46 p.m.
Community leaders call on representative Meehan to oppose the Trump administration’s dirty energy agenda
Patrick Meehan | Foto Cortesía

Delaware County community leaders called on U.S. Representative Pat Meehan to denounce the Trump Administration’s devastating environmental policies that endanger the public health of his constituents.

The press conference, hosted by We Speak for the Trees, comes as Representative Meehan was to return home from Washington at the end of the congressional session, but instead is flying to Laguna Beach, California for a fundraiser, prioritizing speaking with donors over his own constituents. Speakers called on the Congressman to work on behalf of his constituents’ interest and protect them from the harmful health impacts of climate change.

“I’m deeply disappointed Representative Meehan isn’t here today to hear our concerns about the future of Pennsylvania’s air and water. Instead of flying to California to hear first and foremost from his donors he needs to be home in the district he represents. We, as his constituents, deserve better and our planet deserves better,” said Cathy Spahr, We Speak for the Trees.

Lives are at stake, especially for the more than 1 million Pennsylvanians who suffer from asthma and for low-income and disadvantaged communities, which are disproportionally impacted by pollution and climate change.

“Rep. Meehan must make sure that our environment is safe for all of us to live and breathe. This is especially critical for families of people of color, many of whom live near pollution-emitting facilities that dirty the air and make asthma common in those communities,” said Kim McCollum, a community advocate. “This is significant a public health problem that needs to be addressed now. Our environment is for all of us, no matter who you are or what you do, and it needs to be preserved for all of us.”

Speakers condemned the Trump administration for its plan to gut the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s budget and staffing, which would hobble the agency and its mission to protect Pennsylvanians from dangerous pollution.

"This community is committed to a healthy and safe environment, and we have been asking Rep. Meehan to help and protect us for months and months. Instead he has voted for more pollution to our air and water, putting us in greater and greater danger. He should be standing up for his constituents, instead of voting to support President Trump’s anti-EPA agenda,” said Christine Russell, District 7 Citizens for Equality Action.

Speakers concluded by committing to continue to hold Representative Meehan accountable for protecting public health, and for ensuring U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt operates with transparency and integrity as the head of the EPA.