BEIJING — As Gov. Jerry Brown tours some of China’s economic hubs this week, he is breathing the kind of heavy, soiled air that blanketed Los Angeles decades ago.
The soot and smog that are byproducts of this country’s industrial progress are choking its people and threatening its economy. Chinese leaders are talking openly about the need to clean up the air, and to learn how from California.
Re “Cost of fuel standard too high” (Letters, March 12): The American Lung Association in California is invested in the success of California’s clean fuels standard as a part of our mission to save lives and improve lung health. Californians face some of the harshest air pollution in America, largely because we are still hooked on oil.
Our kids, seniors and other vulnerable populations deal with ongoing challenges of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and other chronic illnesses made worse by dirty air. Air pollution costs people healthy days, takes kids out of school and sports, and costs our state billions in health care and lost productivity costs.
California businesses and the public at large are beginning to reap the substantial rewards of our state’s landmark clean air and energy policies. Unfortunately, this progress is in significant jeopardy thanks to the oil industry and other dirty energy companies that continue to do everything possible to undermine these laws. It is important to remember the long history of these efforts by looking at the facts – and that means treading over some familiar turf.