The EPA Delays Changes to Air Quality Regulations
Updated: Aug 29
Last January the EPA announced their plan to modify current air quality regulations. They proposed a 10 to 15 part per billion (ppb) reduction in acceptable ozone levels, however, the agency recently pushed back the effective date to July in an attempt to gain more scientific evidence.
Ground-level ozone, which is the primary component in smog, can exacerbate respiratory conditions, such as asthma. The EPA argues that a reduction in ozone could prevent up to 12,000 untimely deaths, 58,000 cases of aggravated asthma and save as much as $100 billion in healthcare costs. While this seems encouraging, industry representatives believe the agency is misrepresenting the number of individuals this more stringent regulation would help.
The EPA has already gained support from the American Lung Association, the American Medical Association and a panel of 23 air experts; however, they have announced that further analysis is required. According to Lisa Jackson, EPA Administrator, the agency wants “further interpretation” from the experts to ensure that the standard is “grounded in science.”
If the EPA reduces the air quality standards for ozone, as expected, many businesses will experience an increase in expenses. A 10 to15 ppb reduction in ozone levels would require significant changes in business operations, including more frequent auto-inspections, new emission controls and much more.
For more information on how your organization may be affected contact Tom Petersen at 215-881-9401 or Tom@eesolutions.net.