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Clean Air Act Amendments of 1977 Statement on Signing H.R. 6161 Into Law.

August 08, 1977

I am pleased to sign into law H.R. 6161, the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1977. This act is the culmination of a 3-year effort by the Congress to develop legislation which will continue our progress toward meeting our national clean air goals in all parts of the country. The issues involved in amending the Clean Air Act have been difficult and the debate lengthy. However, I believe that the Congress, under the leadership of Senator Muskie and Representative Rogers, has adopted a sound and comprehensive program for achieving and preserving healthy air in our Nation.

The automobile industry now has a firm timetable for meeting strict, but achievable emission reductions. That industry now knows with certainty what is required and can devote its full-time energies to designing cars which will further our clean air goals while continuing to improve fuel efficiency.

This timetable will be enforced.

With this legislation, we can continue to protect our national parks and our major national wilderness areas and national monuments from the degradation of air pollution. Other clean air areas of the country will also be protected, at the same time permitting economic growth in an environmentally sound manner.

The act provides us with a new tool to help abate industrial sources of pollution by authorizing use of economic incentives to reduce noncompliance. By directing the Environmental Protection Agency to establish monetary penalties equal to the cost of cleanup, those industries which delay installing abatement equipment will no longer be rewarded in the marketplace.

These three major provisions, coupled with the other authorities of H.R. 6161, provide the statutory framework for the Environmental Protection Agency to implement a firm, but responsible program for meeting and maintaining air quality standards which are necessary to protect the health of all of our citizens.

Note: As enacted, H.R. 6161 is Public Law 95-95, approved August 7.
The statement was released at Americus, Ga.

Jimmy Carter, Clean Air Act Amendments of 1977 Statement on Signing H.R. 6161 Into Law. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/243842

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