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Tell your member of Congress to oppose any use of the Congressional Review Act

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It is shameful that Republican leaders in Congress have turned to eviscerating clean air and water protections as their early priority in 2017.

As Congress goes back to work, these representatives have already undone one key protection and are working on eviscerating a second. The Stream Protection Rule, a commonsense clean-water regulation, died in the Congress on February 2. Now, the BLM Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, which would make our air cleaner by requiring oil and gas operators to reduce wasteful pollution, is under attack.

Their weapon of choice is the Congressional Review Act, a back-door tactic that allows Congress to erase recently finalized protections with little debate and zero public input.

Any use of the Congressional Review Act would have long-term anti-democratic consequences and should be opposed.

The Stream Protection Rule lost by a narrow margin in the Senate—we can't let the polluter allies in Congress win again. It was a modest rule that had been in the works for close to a decade. This long-awaited update to surface mining regulations provided communities with information they needed about water contamination caused by nearby coal mining operations. It included several important safeguards for clean water and the well-being of communities living near coal mines.

The BLM Methane and Waste Protection Rule would require the oil and gas industry to reduce venting, flaring and leaks at industry operations on public lands. Methane traps 86 times more heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide, fast-tracking the consequences of catastrophic climate change—from droughts and wildfires to sea-level rise and flooding. Each year, oil and gas companies leak or deliberately vent millions of tons of methane into the atmosphere during their operations. Methane pollution not only speeds up global warming, but is often accompanied by toxic air pollutants like benzene, formaldehyde and ethylbenzene, threatening the health of people who live near oil and gas sites.

We must speak in a unified voice and demand that our elected officials stand with impacted communities to stop attacks on health and climate protections. Repeals of the Stream Protection Rule and the BLM Methane and Waste Protection Rule are only being contemplated for the sake of polluting industries’ profits. Americans didn’t vote against clean air, clean water or health protections in this last election.

Tell your member of Congress to oppose any use of the Congressional Review Act to weaken clean air, clean water and health protections.

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‘Dirty Bundle’ of Regulatory Bills Threatens Vital Safeguards for Americans

YOUR MESSAGE

Do not use an extreme tool to attack clean water and clean air protections

Dear Congressperson,



I urge you to oppose all efforts to use the Congressional Review Act (CRA), a back-door tactic, to undermine clean air, clean water and health and safety regulations. This includes the Department of the Interior's recently finalized Stream Protection Rule. This modest rule, which took more than eight years to develop, provides communities with information they desperately need about water pollution caused by nearby coal mining operations, and includes several important protections for clean water and the health of communities that are near coal mining operations.

Any attack on the safeguards in the Stream Protection Rule is an attack on clean water and should be opposed.

Another protection under attack is the BLM Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, which would require the oil and gas industry to reduce venting, flaring and leaks at industry operations on public lands by deploying methane mitigation technology. Repealing this rule would harm public health and reduce revenue to the federal government and western states. Currently, more than $330 million worth of natural gas is wasted on public and tribal lands each year, meaning that taxpayers could lose out on $800 million in royalties over the next decade due to venting and flaring of this gas.

The BLM estimates the rule's net benefits range from $115 to $204 million per year. Leaked natural gas contains volatile organic compounds, an asthma irritant; benzene; and other hazardous air pollutants that are known carcinogens.

The Stream Protection Rule and the BLM Methane and Waste Prevention Rule are crucial protections that reduce air and water pollution and protect public health, future generations and taxpayer dollars. They should not be revoked.

I urge you to vigorously oppose any use of the CRA, including these attacks against air and water protections and efforts to combat climate change.

Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[City, State ZIP]

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