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The Coalition to Protect America’s National Parks joined the National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) and filed an amicus brief with the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, a legal challenge to the Trump Administration’s attempt to eliminate California’s authority to apply its own automobile emission standards under the Clean Air Act. In the brief, we are asking the court to deny the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) attempt to prevent California from setting its own vehicle emissions standards — standards that are needed to reduce air pollution, combat climate change and prevent further harm to our national parks and communities.

Coalition Chair Phil Francis issued the following statement:

“National Parks in California are suffering the negative effects of air pollution and climate change. The habitat of Joshua trees is shrinking dramatically in Joshua Tree National Park, and giant sequoias are heavily stressed in Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks. Thanks to climate change-driven drought and insect infestations, over 100 million trees in the Sierra Nevada have died since 2010, increasing the danger of devastating wildfires. And nine of the ten largest wildfires in California history have occurred in the past 20 years, with significant damage to parks.

Given the acute impacts due to climate change that are already occurring in our national parks, this administration’s Waiver Withdrawal is a big move in the wrong direction that will only accelerate the harm that is already occurring to park resources in California and the thirteen other states that have adopted California’s more protective air emissions standards.”