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Bush Rallies Support for Environment Plan

June 13, 1989|From Associated Press

GRAND TETON NATIONAL PARK, Wyo. — Framed against majestic, snow-streaked mountains, President Bush rallied Americans today to support his plan for combatting air pollution, saying, "Nature needs our help."

One day after unveiling a proposal for cleaning up acid-rain pollutants, smog and toxic chemicals from the air, Bush declared, "Environmental gridlock must end."

Despite disputes among energy, mining, chemical and environmental groups about what to do, Bush said, "There's one thing everyone agrees on. We need action. And we need it now."

He said competing interests in Congress have "jammed the avenue to action" for more than a decade.

In addition, there were eight years of silence on environmental matters from Ronald Reagan's White House.

Bush spoke to an audience of more than 1,000 residents and tourists in a field at Teton Science School. The craggy, snow-filled Teton Mountains served as his backdrop. Brilliant blue skies and a blazing sun helped make it a picture-perfect day.

Bush said every American deserves to breathe clean air. "And you shouldn't have to drive 2,000 miles to come out here to do it. Environmental gridlock must end."

He told the Teton audience that he marveled at nature's regenerative power but said that, "whether restoring a forest or the air that flows above it, nature needs our help."

Bush said the medical wastes that washed up on East Coast shores last year and the wandering garbage barge that almost didn't find a port "helped provide the jolt we needed" for environmental action.

"Some say we are running out of time," Bush said. "Wrong. The only thing we are running out of is imagination and the will to bring what we can imagine to life."

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