December 28, 2018 | YORK, PA—In what amounts to a Christmas stocking filled with coal, Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler presented our children, both preborn and born – as well as pregnant women or those who hope to become pregnant – the gift of one of the most serious neurotoxins, mercury.
In Mr. Wheeler’s announcement that the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS) would be rolled back or altered, he tossed away one of America’s largest life protecting environmental achievements.
Mercury is a highly toxic neurotoxin that, when ingested by pregnant women, crosses the placenta and results in irreversible brain damage in preborn children. The same impacts occur even after birth as mothers can even transfer mercury through breast milk—that perfectly calibrated, God-designed nutrition source for newborns. There are no known safe levels of mercury and even with the current success brought about by the MATS rule, our streams, rivers, lakes, and oceans still contain harmful levels of the life-destroying heavy metal.
“The action today by Mr. Wheeler amounts to an almost criminal threat to our children”, stated Rev. Mitch Hescox, President of the Evangelical Environmental Network. “No pro-life Christian wants harm to any developing child, and today’s news exposes our kids to brain damage that will last a lifetime. What is most frustrating is that nobody wants the MATS rule repealed or changed. Electric Utilities groups advocated to preserve it, as did a bipartisan group of senators. On December 4, I personally delivered a letter from Leith Anderson, President of National Association of Evangelicals, myself and over 100 additional evangelical leaders calling for MATS to be left alone,” Hescox continued. “But apparently the only people that have Mr. Wheeler’s ear are his former coal industry clients. Instead of preserving abundant life as the Bible shares, Mr. Wheeler is throwing a ‘millstone’ around our children’s necks –all while trying to keep the dying coal industry on life support.”