News Column

Esai Manuel Morales Speaks Out for the Environment

Oct. 15, 2012


Esai Manuel Morales

Puerto Rican actor Esai Manuel Morales is featured in a new environmental video, "Tips on Clean Air Living," produced by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) in Southern California.

The AQMD video also includes interviews with other film and TV celebrities, who all present simple steps that residents can take at home and on the road to help improve air quality.

The eight-minute video, available for viewing at, premiered Oct. 12 at AQMD's 24th annual Clean Air Awards at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles.

Esai Manuel Morales, known for acting in the film La Bamba and TV's NYPD Blue, explains that the use of paints and other coatings emit 22 tons of smog-forming pollutants every day, more than five times the amount emitted by all of the region's oil refineries.

To help reduce pollution, residents can use paints that contain no or very low amounts of smog-forming volatile organic compounds, he said.

"As a dad and a longtime environmental and health advocate, I wanted to remind people that while we're all part of the problem, we can all become part of the solution," Morales told "Given the impacts of air pollution on kids and families, we have to do everything we can to make our air healthier."

Paul Reiser, Wendie Malick, Elisabeth Röhm, Ed Begley Jr., Sharon Lawrence and Donna Mills are just some of the other actors who sent a message to Southern Californians. And Morales reminds that every individual has a part in helping.

"The environment should be important to everyone, including U.S. Hispanics," he said. "As my mother taught me when I was just a youngster, we must protect mother nature for she provides us with everything we need -- clean air and water and healthy food.

"Since many Hispanics live in or near cities with higher pollution, they are often more at risk, and therefore should be as concerned as anyone about the health of our environment," he added.

"Southland residents can play a vital role helping to reduce air pollution," said William Burke, AQMD governing board chairman. "We are going to need all 16 million residents to do their part in reducing emissions to reach our goal of clean air."

AQMD is the air pollution control agency for Orange County, Calif., and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

Source: (c) 2012. All rights reserved.

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