President George H.W. Bush and His Clean Air Legacy

Thanks to the Clean Air Act, Miami’s beautiful skyline will remain smog free.

Thanks to the Clean Air Act, Miami’s beautiful skyline will remain smog free.

Michaela White, News Writer

President George H.W. Bush, who served as leader of the United States from 1989 to 1993, passed away in Houston, Texas on November 30. The nation has been mourning the loss of the former president ever since headlines erupted across the United States with news of his passing. Although it is a sad time for the nation, it is also a time to reflect on the great things he did for America.

In 1990, President Bush amended the Clean Air Act, which was a considerable feat, tackling issues like acid rain, air pollution, ozone depletion, and toxic car emissions. Although it is seen as ‘just’ an achievement in his lengthy resume, it is something that still serves Americans today. If the Clean Air Act was never amended, then today, the amount of smog in cities would be astronomical, right along with toxic car emissions. That means that there would be more asthma attacks, lung cancer, and many other harmful diseases that would plague Americans for decades to come. Thankfully, though, that is not the case, making the Clean Air Act ever so vital since “it paves the way for a clean future,” says junior Gracie Robles.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the Clean Air Act was a saving grace that prevented the United States from reaching an ecological tipping point, also known as a point of no return. Of course, there is still pollution today, but it is far less than what could’ve been. Had the Act not been amended, let alone passed, we Americans would be facing a very dark, dystopian future.

Often, it is human nature that seems to appreciate only what is presently visible, but it is usually what comes from the past that leaves the most lasting impact. AP Environmental Science student Karina Maceo asserts that the Act “reduces the amount of carbon emissions in the U.S. so people are not impacted by more dangerous gases.” Therefore, in truth, this Act has helped America more than we’ll ever know, and it is up to us to not take it for granted.

Thank you, President Bush.