On This Day December 17
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1963 – Congress passes the Clean Air Act, a sweeping set of laws designed to protect the environment from air pollution. During the six decades since its enactment, the measure led to huge reductions in airborne lead, sulfur compounds, chlorofluorocarbons as well as concentrations of carbon monoxide, particulate matter and ozone.
1979 – Hollywood stuntman Stan Barrett tears across the dry lakebed at California’s Edwards Air Force Base in a rocket- and missile-powered car, becoming the first person to travel faster than the speed of sound on land. However, he does not set an official record.
1989 – Doh! FOX TV’s Emmy-winning animated comedy series “The Simpsons,” created by Matt Groening, premieres. The first episode is called “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire.” In 2018, the show surpasses the classic Western TV series “Gunsmoke’s” record 635 episodes to become America’s longest-running series.