Cross-State Air Pollution Rule: Good news for PA, but Allegheny County Still Projected to Violate 20

The Environmental Protection Agency reports that most of the counties with air quality monitors in the region covered by the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) are projected to meet the 1997 and 2006 ozone and fine particle standards in 2014.

The one county projected to NOT meet the 2006 fine particle standard is Allegheny County.

U.S. Steel’s Clairton Coke Works has a huge influence on local PM2.5 concentrations there. However, long-range transport also plays a significant role in the air quality problem.  Liberty-Clairton’s PM2.5 problem is caused by a combination of local and distant air pollution sources, and it can only be addressed by achieving reductions from both local and distant sources.  The Clairton Coke Works must do its part; upwind air pollution sources must do theirs.

More information on CSAPR: On July 6, 2011, the EPA finalized a rule that protects the health of millions of Americans by helping states reduce air pollution and attain the 1997 ozone and fine particle and 2006 fine particle National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).  This rule, known as the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, requires 27 states to significantly improve air quality by reducing power plant emissions that cross state lines and contribute to ozone and fine particle air pollution in other states.

The Cross-State Air Pollution Rule will help avoid tens of thousands of premature deaths and illnesses, achieving billions of dollars in public health benefits.  By 2014, the required emissions reductions will annually avoid:

• 13,000 to 34,000 premature deaths • 15,000 nonfatal heart attacks • 19,000 hospital and emergency room visits • 1.8 million lost workdays or school absences • 400,000 aggravated asthma attacks

Air pollution reductions will also lead to improvements in visibility in national and state parks, and increased protection for sensitive ecosystems including Adirondack lakes and Appalachian streams, coastal waters and estuaries, and forests.

For more information about the CSAPR visit http://www.epa.gov/crossstaterule/

#PM25 #airpollution #LibertyClairton #particulatepollution #AmbientAirQualityStandards #ClairtonCokeWorks #airquality

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