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Ozone air quality standards : EPA's proposed changes

Author: James E McCarthy; Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service.
Publisher: [Washington, D.C.] : Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, 2007.
Series: CRS report for Congress, RL34057.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : National government publication : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson proposed changes to the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone on June 20, 2007; the proposal appeared in the Federal Register July 11. NAAQS are standards for outdoor (ambient) air that are intended to protect public health and welfare from harmful concentrations of pollution. If the standard is changed as proposed, EPA would be concluding that protecting public  Read more...
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Details

Material Type: Document, Government publication, National government publication, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: James E McCarthy; Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service.
OCLC Number: 166421760
Notes: "Updated July 13, 2007." Updated periodically.
Title from PDF title screen (viewed Aug. 30, 2007).
Description: 12 unnumbered pages : digital file.
Details: Mode of access: World Wide Web.; System requirements: Adobe Acrobat Reader.
Series Title: CRS report for Congress, RL34057.
Responsibility: James E. McCarthy.

Abstract:

EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson proposed changes to the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone on June 20, 2007; the proposal appeared in the Federal Register July 11. NAAQS are standards for outdoor (ambient) air that are intended to protect public health and welfare from harmful concentrations of pollution. If the standard is changed as proposed, EPA would be concluding that protecting public health and welfare requires lower concentrations of ozone pollution than it previously judged to be safe. This report discusses the standard-setting process, the specifics of the ozone standard, and issues raised by the proposal, and it describes the steps that will follow EPAs proposal. The ozone standard affects a large percentage of the population: about half the U.S. population currently lives in ozone "nonattainment" areas (the term EPA uses for areas that violate the standard), 156 million people in all. If the standard is strengthened as a result of the current review, as proposed, more areas would be affected, and those already considered nonattainment might have to impose more stringent emission controls. The proposal would lower the current standard from 0.08 parts per million (ppm) averaged over 8 hours to something in the range of 0.070 to 0.075 ppm. At the lower end of that range, 533 counties (83% of all counties with ozone monitors) would violate the proposed standard using the most recent three years of monitoring data. Only 104 counties exceed the current standard. Thus, a change in the standard could have widespread impacts in areas across the country.

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