More evidence EPA’s current ozone rule is working and we don’t need a new, stricter one.
EPA on Friday said 13 metropolitan areas have reduced smog ahead of schedule using early action compact agreements. These agreements give communities the flexibility to create their own plans to meet 8-hour ozone standards.
The areas that succeeded included Columbia, S.C., San Antonio, Chattanooga and Nashville.
Don’t pop the champagne cork and start celebrating yet.
EPA in March is set to announce a stricter ozone standard that critics say is unscientific, likely unreachable in parts of the country, and would bring unnecessary economic hardship and job losses.
The new rule could stymie economic growth in some areas because companies would have to install expensive ozone controls, which could prompt some to take business and jobs elsewhere. According to the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Bob Colby, director of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Air Pollution Control Bureau, said his area could soon fall right back out of compliance under the new EPA rule.
“If they select a much lower number, we’d be out,” Colby said. However, he added it’s too early to speculate.
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