EDITORIAL: Will Trump era undo Utah air quality progress?

Salt Lake Tribune
Published Feb 03 2017


Believe it or not, the air is getting cleaner in Utah.

Is that going to continue? For the next few years, it largely depends on the Donald Trump administration.

In a state that prides itself on thin regulation, Utahns never have received much help from state law when it comes to air pollution. Utah legislators, particularly in recent years, have been willing to chip in, like requiring more efficient water heaters or tax incentives for electric cars.

But the real hammer has been the federal Clean Air Act and the Environmental Protection Agency that enforces it. That nearly half-century-old commitment to reducing pollution required dramatic cuts in industrial air pollution and a steady tightening of emissions standards for automobiles.

Those two requirements have driven the vast majority of progress made to reduce the harmful chemicals that get trapped by the Wasatch Front’s geography. And as the Front once again topped the nation for the worst air this week, we’re also faced with the prospect of losing that hammer.

To read the full editorial, please click here….