Feb 17, 2021

Environmental Groups File Suit to Overturn “Do Nothing” (Ozone Standards)

Ozone Quality

Environmental groups have sued the EPA to overturn its December 31st rule retaining Obama Era National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone.  The suit alleges that the Trump EPA ignored science and mounting evidence that serious health harms occur due to ozone exposure at levels below the current NAAQS.  Litigation is likely to focus heavily on the truncated NAAQS review process used by the Trump administration which allegedly failed to properly analyze the latest science on health risk, resulting in a predetermined outcome favored by industry which did not propose tighter regulation.  The EPA, in its December rule, retained… Read more

Jan 10, 2018

EPA Responds to States Regarding Ozone Nonattainment Areas

Factory Emitting Air Pollution and the Ozone

The U.S. EPA missed its October 1, 2017 deadline to designate which areas of the country exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Ozone under the updated 2015 standards. Environmental and public health groups sued the EPA for missing its deadline, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia gave the agency until January 12, 2018 to announce its plans to complete the process. In response, the EPA issued letters on December 22 to all 50 states informing them whether the agency agrees with state recommendations on which areas within their borders violate the 2015 standards. … Read more

Mar 13, 2014

EPA Unveils Tool for States to Calculate Benefits of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Programs

Many states have implemented, or are considering, legislative or regulatory efforts to incentivize implementation of energy efficiency and renewable energy programs (EE/RE). States have sought guidance from EPA on assessing the pollution benefits of such programs—reduction of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2). The reduction of NOx and SO2 is relevant to state compliance with applicable national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). The reduction of CO2 may be relevant to an upcoming EPA rule—due for proposal in June—establishing new source performance standards (NSPS) for greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants. On February 18, EPA released… Read more

Aug 22, 2012

EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule

A three judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington has scrapped the EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule which was issued on July 2011.  The rule was the EPA’s attempt to address the problem of legally permitted emissions crossing state lines causing the downwind state to be out of compliance with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards.  Two of the judges on the panel sided with more than three dozen challengers to the EPA’s rule which imposed caps on emissions for 27 states.  The rule imposed a cap on sulfur dioxide which can lead to acid rain harmful… Read more