Pro-life Christians are demanding pollution protections

by Rev. Mitchell C. Hescox, The Hill

Today, over 145,000 pro-life Christians from across the country — including over 94,000 from states that voted for President Trump — are calling on the Trump administration to stop its efforts to dismantle protections that defend children in the womb from mercury pollution: the Mercury and Air Toxic Standards (MATS). Dismantling these protections is wrong, and it does not square with our faith or the faith of millions of pro-life Americans.

Children in the womb are uniquely vulnerable to mercury — a potent neurotoxin — because a protective shield around the developing child’s brain, called the “blood-brain barrier,” is not fully formed until the first year of life. Mercury passes across the mother’s placenta, enters the bloodstream of her child and then into the developing child’s brain, causing brain damage, developmental disabilities, neurological disorders, lowered intelligence and learning difficulties.

Defending “sensitive” populations such as children in the womb is precisely why Congress included provisions in the 1990 Clean Air Act to deal with toxic air pollutants like mercury. In its reaffirmation of the Mercury Rule in 2016, the EPA was quite clear that it understood Congress’s intent; these provisions in the law exist, EPA said, to address “the risk to the most exposed and most sensitive members of the population.”

Read more: https://thehill.com/opinion/energy-environment/439240-pro-life-christians-are-demanding-pollution-protections?for-guid=e7359d9a-2fcd-e611-88f6-90b11c3bc1f2&utm_source=usatoday-Climate%20Point&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=narrative&utm_term=article_body

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