RELEASE: Lawmakers pass on a chance to proactively ditch dirty diesel in Oregon
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 17, 2017
SALEM, OR—In a last-minute move, Senate Bill 1008 (SB 1008) – the Clean Engines, Clean Air Act – was gutted to a shell of its former self before the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources passed it on to the Senate Rules committee.
“What a loss for Oregonians,” said Chris Hagerbaumer, Deputy Director of Oregon Environmental Council. “A menu of solutions that would clean up our air and put a deadline on dirty diesel in Oregon was thrown off the table today. A compromise for the health of all Oregonians—lost.”
As it now stands SB 1008 merely authorizes the state of Oregon to use $72.9 million in Volkswagen settlement money and has the state conduct an inventory of off-road equipment. But that’s it. The menu — worked on for more than a year by a statewide group of community, agency and industry stakeholders — is gone. Even the preamble, describing how diesel particulate pollution causes a myriad of health effects and impacts marginalized communities—was cut.
“Our lawmakers keep punting on this issue,” said Hagerbaumer. “We know voluntary incentives are inadequate. Users of old, dirty diesel engines must be given a deadline and direction to clean up their engines, and it must come from our state leadership.”
Over the next two weeks, we urge people to call their state senator and let them know it’s time to stand up and find a fair solution. It’s time to get back to the table and make this opportunity work for Oregon.
(For details on Oregon’s dirty diesel problem and what SB 1008 could achieve, visit: oeconline.org/diesel)
Oregon Environmental Council (@OECOnline) is a statewide nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to advancing innovative, collaborative and equitable solutions to Oregon’s environmental challenges for today and future generations. Visit us: oeconline.org.
Communications Director, Oregon Environmental Council
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