California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and the California Air Resources Board (CARB), leading a multistate coalition, filed comments demanding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) withdraw its proposed rule delaying by four years implementation of a critical regulation that would reduce emissions from landfills. Landfills are the third-largest source of methane emissions – a pollutant with a global warming potential that is 84 times more potent than carbon dioxide over a 20-year timeframe.
The regulation, once implemented, would prevent 7.1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions per year, which translates to 1.5 million passenger vehicles driven, or 850,000 homes’ electricity use, for one year. In addition to harmful methane, landfills emit volatile organic compounds, hazardous air pollutants, and other greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide. Not only do these pollutants contribute to climate change, but they can cause cancer, asthma, and other respiratory diseases, especially among children and older adults.
By State of California Department of Justice, Sierra Sun Times