Assemblymember Mathylde Frontus (D-Brooklyn) announced that she helped pass a series of bills to safeguard public health and promote a greener, more sustainable future for all New Yorkers. The legislative package was passed in recognition of Earth Day, which was April 22.
Im always looking out for the safety and well-being of Brooklyn families, Frontus said. And as the dangers of climate change and harmful effects of pollution grow more threatening, Im working to combat them before its too late. This Earth Day package helps New York lead the way to a healthy future by ensuring access to clean air and water and preserving natural resources for generations to come.
The legislative package includes a measure to strengthen environmental justice policies by requiring the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to publish a list of high local environmental impact zones and consider various factors that contribute to an areas environmental health (A.1779). This bill aims to address the ongoing issue of low-income communities being disproportionately affected by the siting of projects that cause health hazards, noted Frontus. Additionally, the package provides a measure that guarantees the right to clean air and water and a healthful environment (A.2064).
Access to basic needs like healthy air and water should never be determined by ZIP code or the color of someones skin, said Frontus.
The package also includes a bill to help maintain New Yorks water supply by raising the water-saving standards of plumbing fixtures and appliances, including tank-type toilets, shower heads, faucets and urinals (A.2286).
Further, the Earth Day package protects our children and families from dangerous chemicals and includes measures to:
- ban the use of chlorpyrifos, a pesticide linked to adverse health effects that was in the process of being banned at the federal level before President Trumps Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reversed that decision (A.2477-B);
- ensure mercury-added lightbulbs do not contain excessive amounts of mercury (A.2501-A); and
- restrict the use of dangerous chemicals in childrens products (A.6296-A).
The legislative package also includes a measure that allows the DEC to designate species as vulnerable species and provide additional protections for them (A.6600). In addition, the measure bans the sale of articles made from vulnerable species and designates giraffes as a vulnerable species.
Since coming to the Assembly, Frontus has worked to protect the environment and ensure a healthy planet for future generations. She recently helped pass a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags to clean up our neighborhoods and protect our bodies of water from further damage (Ch. 58 of 2019).