About the time in June that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency introduced a plan to reduce carbon emissions from power plants, Martha Huckabay and her neighbors in St. Rose, La., began to smell a foul odor from a chemical storage facility near their home.
Monday marks the 59th anniversary of the Air Pollution Control Act of 1955, the first federal air pollution legislation in the U.S. The act, signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, would prove to be a precursor to the Clean Air Acts of 1963 and 1970 and corresponding amendments passed in 1977 and 1990.
“Then the Lord God formed the man out of the dust of the ground, and blew into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” (Gen. 2:7)
Since the beginning of time, the air we breathe is given to us as a free and ever-present gift from God. Unlike food and water, which is often too scarce for the poorest of the poor, no one can horde, process, package or sell oxygen. Unfortunately, due to humanity’s carelessness, the breath of life is now the kiss of death for seven million people a year.