One hundred Christian leaders told President Bush in a pointed Earth Day rebuke that they have “grave moral concern” about his clean-air policy. The letter, coordinated by the National Council of Churches, accused Bush of weakening air-quality standards and putting the elderly and young children at particular risk through his “Clear Skies” initiative.
The letter faulted Bush’s plan for not setting reduction standards for carbon emissions from power plants, which are believed to be the primary source of global warming. In addition, the letter said “powerful corporate interests have had disproportionate influence” in shaping environmental policy. “We believe that the administration’s energy, clean air and climate change programs prolong our dependence on fossil fuels which is depleting Earth’s resources, poisoning its climate, punishing the poor, constricting sustainable economic growth and jeopardizing global security and peace,” said the letter released April 22.