Today the American Lung Association released “The Road to Clean Air” – a new report which outlines the broad benefits of a transition to an electric transportation sector increasingly powered by clean, non-combustion renewable energy over the coming decades.
The report finds a transition to electric cars, buses, and trucks by mid-century would both improve air quality and address climate change, benefiting the lives and health of Americans and Arizona residents, and would result in significant local benefits.
“The transportation sector is a leading contributor to air pollution and climate change,” said JoAnna Strother, senior director of advocacy, American Lung Association.
“We have the technology to transition to cleaner cars, trucks, and buses, and by taking that step we can prepare Arizona for the future while also seeing the health and economic benefits forecasted in ‘The Road to Clean Air’. “Especially as our state faces the impacts of climate change such as wildfires and extreme heat, this is a powerful and practical opportunity to take action to improve our air, our health, and our future.”
“The Road to Clean Air” outlines the broad benefits of the transition to an electric transportation sector over the coming decades.
National benefits per year based on emission reductions in 2050:
- avoiding approximately 6,300 premature deaths
- preventing more than 93,000 asthma attacks
- preventing 416,000 lost workdays
- $72 Billion in public health benefits
- $113 Billion in climate impacts avoided
Benefits in Arizona per year based on emission reductions in 2050:
- Avoiding approximately 126 premature deaths
- Preventing more than 1,956 asthma attacks
- Preventing 8,475 lost workdays per year
- $1.4 Billion in public health benefits
Climate change threatens the health of all Americans, from wildfires and extreme storms to worsening air pollution. And poor air quality caused by transportation pollution contributes to a wide range of negative health impacts, including childhood asthma attacks, impaired lung function and development, lung cancer, heart attacks and strokes and premature deaths.
As shown in the Lung Association’s annual “State of the Air” report, nearly half of all Americans are living with unhealthy air quality, and low-income communities and communities of color are disproportionately impacted by bad air quality.
The Phoenix metro was ranked among the ten most polluted cities in the United States for ozone and particle pollution in the “State of the Air” 2020 report and could see approximately $960 Million in health benefits through a strong push for electric transportation, according to this new research.
Achieving these major benefits to our health and our climate will require dedicated and sustained leadership and investment at all levels of government and will require public education and engagement to ensure the transition to electric vehicles provides clean air for all.