President Clinton and Vice President Gore have taken dramatic steps to protect our environment and public health. Administration accomplishments last year include:
Global Warming - U.S. leadership helped forge an historic agreement in Kyoto, Japan, to reduce greenhouse gas pollution by harnessing the forces of the global marketplace through an international system of emissions trading.
Air Pollution - Strong new controls on smog and soot will prevent up to 15,000 premature deaths a year and improve the lives of millions of Americans who suffer respiratory illnesses.
Saving Great Places - The Administration took major steps to protect Yellowstone National Park, Florida's Everglades, the crystalline waters of Lake Tahoe and the red rock canyons of Utah.
Protecting Communities Against Toxics - New rules expand every community's right to know about chemicals released to the air and water, and new resources are accelerating the cleanup of abandoned industrial sites.
Among the new environmental initiatives planned for 1998 are two announced by the President in his State of the Union address:
Advanced Technology to Fight Global Warming - To begin implementing the Climate Change Plan outlined by the President in October, the FY99 budget will propose $6.3 billion over five years to stimulate the development and use of technologies that will reduce greenhouse gas pollution. The package provides tax incentives for consumers and businesses to adopt clean energy technologies and supports research on energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.
Clean, Safe Water for All Americans - Twenty-five years after passage of the Clean Water Act, the President is launching a major new initiative to fulfill its promise -- clean, safe water for every American. Despite tremendous strides in cleaning up lakes, rivers and coastal waters, 40 percent of America's waterways are still too polluted for fishing and swimming. In October, the Vice President directed agencies to prepare an aggressive Action Plan to: curb polluted runoff from farms and city streets; reduce toxic contaminants and harmful organisms in drinking water and fish; and promote community-based watershed management. The President's FY99 budget will include substantial new resources for this initiative and the agencies' Action Plan will be released in February. Further, the President is renewing his challenge to Congress to join him in strenghtening the Clean Water Act.