Environment & Health moves the needle on energy policy! December 14, 2023
In 2023, the PSR Environment & Health team’s strategic highlighting of the health effects of energy choices helped to change policies across the nation.
PSR advances Building Decarbonization
- PSR enables chapters – We provided seven PSR chapters with grants to continue detailing the health benefits of building electrification, which replaces gas-burning furnaces, boilers and stoves with clean electric alternatives. Decarbonization policies are advancing nationwide!
- We provide expert testimony – We provided expert testimony on HB23-1134, a bill in the Colorado State House that requires home warranty contracts to allow coverage for replacing gas-fire appliances with electric alternatives. The bill passed and is now law in Colorado.
- Animated videos – We created a series of five short-form, animated videos explaining the negative health impacts of indoor fossil fuel use. The campaign received widespread praise from the Building Decarbonization sector and was covered in CleanTechnica.
- Coauthored report. Fossil fuel combustion in our homes and buildings is an overlooked contributor to air pollution outdoors as well as indoors, and it damages the climate. We co-wrote a report on the subject with Sierra Club and WeAct for Environmental Justice.
PSR influences federal agency rulemaking
- PSR submits formal comments – We submitted 13 comments on proposed rulemakings to federal agencies from the U.S. EPA to the Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, Department of Energy, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. In addition, we signed onto 50 letters with our allies in the health and environmental fields expressing our views on critical topics to agencies, Congress, and the White House.
- We mobilize our members – PSR members received 18 action alerts over the course of the year, leading to thousands of comments submitted and letters written.
- Together, we help secure a win! We celebrated a major policy win earlier this month: A new standard we supported for reducing methane leaks from oil and gas wells was finalized by EPA and announced at COP28.
PSR helps limit fracking
- We release three more state-specific reports revealing the use of “forever” PFAS chemicals in fracking — Texas, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania, with West Virginia coming soon.
- We inform legislators nationwide. We presented on the use of toxic PFAS chemicals in fracking at the national conference of the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators – a key audience for enacting laws that protect the environment.
- PSR helps pass legislation. Our reports serve as invaluable tools, used by local activists in Colorado to pass the nation’s strongest law banning PFAS use in oil and gas operations, and to push for limits on PFAS in fracking in New Mexico and Pennsylvania.
We thank our members, chapters, funders and allies for helping us secure these valuable steps forward to protect our health, environment, and climate.