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Nadler: New Report on Effects of Diesel Pollution Underscores Importance of Rail Freight Tunnel

Washington, DC, February 22, 2005
A new study of the effects of diesel exhaust pollution in New York City underscores the need to take diesel trucks off of City streets, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) said today.  The study, conducted by the Clean Air Task Force, found that more than 1,700 New York City residents die prematurely each year as a result of exposure to diesel fumes.  City dwellers also suffer more heart attacks per capita than residents of any other metropolitan area in the nation.

“We’ve always known that diesel pollution was a major problem in the City – but not until today has the extent of the damage been clear,” Congressman Nadler said.  “It’s outrageous that we allow this type of pollution to go on.  We have to act.”

For more than 20 years, Congressman Nadler has led the effort to build the Cross Harbor Rail Freight Tunnel, a tunnel under New York Harbor that would allow freight to enter the City by freight train.  The completed tunnel will remove one million diesel trucks per year from City streets, vastly reducing the amount of air pollution from diesel engines.

“It’s more apparent than ever that we need to take serious, immediate action to cut down on diesel air pollution in New York City, and the Cross Harbor tunnel will do that,” Nadler continued.  “We’ve let too much time pass already – and thousands are dying.”

Nadler is seeking funding for the Cross Harbor Rail Freight Tunnel in the six-year transportation funding bill currently before Congress.  Nadler is the senior Northeastern Democrat on the House Transportation Committee.

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