Salt Lake Tribune
August 7, 2017
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Director Scott Pruitt announced this week that the agency was moving ahead with defining places that need to do more to reduce ozone pollution, reversing an earlier decision to delay by a year.
What does that mean for Utah? Basically nothing. Utah’s air quality regulators anticipate Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Duchesne and Uintah counties being declared “non-attainment areas,” meaning ozone concentrations reach unhealthy levels too often. The only remaining question is what level of non-attainment the counties have reached. Those that barely exceed are given more time to see if the situation improves, while areas that are bigger violators have to take bigger steps.
The announcement came the same week that Utah air quality officials said we’re having our worst ozone season since 2008. There have been more than a dozen times this summer when some area in the state has exceeded EPA ozone standards. So while the bureaucrats in Washington grind through their procedures, Utah would be wise to jump ahead and start actually making the air healthier.
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