CLEAN AIR AND UTILITIES

WHEREAS, the Nation's Mayors seek to provide affordable energy and clean air in their communities; and

WHEREAS, under the Clean Air Act, States develop State Implementation Plans (SIP's) for areas that do not comply with National Ambient Air Quality Standards; and

WHEREAS, city infrastructure investment, economic development decisions, and transportation planning are constrained by emissions limits under SIPs; and

WHEREAS, up to forty percent of emissions are generated from mobile sources such as cars, trucks, trains, airplanes and commercial equipment, and up to fifty percent from stationary sources such as those from the industrial and electric-power generation sectors; and

WHEREAS, local governments have recognized that emissions in non-attainment areas come from the transportation sector and that local government have the authority to address some aspects of transportation emission levels, cities have made substantial investments aimed at improving air quality, through such means as smart growth planning, transit-oriented development, and use of alternative fuels in municipal fleets; and

WHEREAS, the Clean Air Act did not require coal-fired power plants, built before 1977, to install modern pollution controls with the understanding that these older plants would be retired and new, cleaner ones built in their place; and

WHEREAS, many of these older power plants are still operating and have not yet installed modernized pollution controls, thereby contributing significantly to the Ozone and Particular Matter problems in non-attainment areas; and

WHEREAS, a number of different proposals have been introduced by Congress and the Administration to address the issue of clean air standards and utilities through a multi-pollutant approach,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors encourages the Administration to enforce existing regulations and Congress to pass new legislation requiring older power plants to reduce all air emissions, focusing on results-based outcomes; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors supports a comprehensive and synchronized multi-pollutant market-based program to reduce regulatory costs, maintain reliable energy for consumers, and provide certainty to the electric power sector in ways that do not compromise public health; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors encourages Congress to set national air emission caps under a multi-pollutant plan at levels strong enough to substantively assist cities in their efforts to attain the National Ambient Air Quality Standards by statutory guidelines; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that The U.S. Conference of Mayors encourages Congress to neither preempt nor restrict the ability of State and local authorities to take further action in this area if needed; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that until any new programs have been proven over time to be as protective as current Clean Air Act programs, The U.S. Conference of Mayors encourages EPA and Congress to keep those programs in place, with multi-pollutant legislation as an addition to current clean air law.