EPA Proposes Clean Air Standards - Release Date: 06/15/2012
WASHINGTON – In response to a court order, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today proposed updates to its national air quality standards for harmful fine particle pollution, including soot (known as PM2.5). These microscopic particles can penetrate deep into the lungs and have been linked to a wide range of serious health effects, including premature death, heart attacks, and strokes, as well as acute bronchitis and aggravated asthma among children. A federal court ruling required EPA to update the standard based on best available science. Today’s proposal, which meets that requirement, builds on smart steps already taken by the EPA to slash dangerous pollution in communities across the country. Thanks to these steps, 99 percent of U.S. counties are projected to meet the proposed standard without any additional action.
EPA’s proposal would strengthen the annual health standard for harmful fine particle pollution (PM2.5) to a level within a range of 13 micrograms per cubic meter to 12 micrograms per cubic meter. The current annual standard is 15 micrograms per cubic meter. The proposed changes, which are consistent with the advice from the agency’s independent science advisors, are based on an extensive body of scientific evidence that includes thousands of studies – including many large studies which show negative health impacts at lower levels than previously understood. By proposing a range, the agency will collect input from the public as well as a number of stakeholders, including industry and public health groups, to help determine the most appropriate final standard to protect public health. It is important to note that the proposal has zero effect on the existing daily standard for fine particles or the existing daily standard for coarse particles (PM10), both of which would remain unchanged.
Woodstove Changeout Wraps Up in Lane County
Lane County recently completed a woodstove changeout program. The effort was successful in reducing particulate emissions by over 10 tons per year. According to Lne Regional Air Pollution Authority (LRAPA) 79 woodstoves were replaced in Oakridge and 137 in Eugene, Springfield and Cottage Grove.
For media inquiries in Oregon on wood stoves, pellet stoves contact
Harvey Gail, Executive Director 503-585-8254
For national trends in woodstoves, pellet stoves, barbecues and outdoor living contact Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association
For questions about chimney safety, chimney cleaning or related issues contact Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA)
For information about the grill business see the 2012 State of the Barbecue Industry Report from the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association