EPA Clamps Down On Pollution Spoiling Air Downwind

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Environmental Protection Agency is clamping down on pollution from power plants in 27 states that contributes to unhealthy air downwind.

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson announced on Thursday a plan to clean up smog, soot and acid rain in downwind states — where they combine with locally produced pollution, making it impossible for those states to meet air quality standards on their own.

The rule differs from one proposed in July. Power plants in the District of Columbia and five states — Delaware, Connecticut, Florida, Louisiana and Massachusetts — will no longer have to control for two pollutants — sulfur dioxide, responsible for acid rain, and nitrogen oxides, which contribute to smog and soot.

Texas, by contrast, will have to reduce more pollution than the initial proposal.

The regulation replaces a 2005 Bush administration proposal that was rejected by a federal court.

Jackson, in a call with reporters Thursday, said the regulation would make sure no community has to bear the burden of another community’s polluters. She said just because pollution drifts far from a power plant, “doesn’t mean pollution is no longer that plant’s responsibility.”

“Pollution that crosses state lines places a greater burden on (downwind) states and makes them responsible for cleaning up someone else’s mess,” she said.

The rule, which will start going into effect next year, will cost power companies $800 million annually in 2014. That’s in addition to the $1.6 billion spent per year to comply with the Bush rule that was still in effect until the government drafted a new one. The agency said that cost would be far outweighed by the public health benefits.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


One Comment

  1. Elmer says:

    How much will this jack up the price of electricity?

  2. TH in TX says:

    Great idea! Increase costs to businesses and individuals while the economy is still struggling! WHERE IS A LITTLE (not much required) common sense?????

  3. Land says:

    So…Elmer, TH,

    Are you saying business should be law abiding and clean only when economies are good? Does that make common sense? Or are you guys lobbyists?

    When I put the trash on the curb, I know I have to pay for it. But if I don’t have the money to pay for trash pickup, shall I just just toss it in your yard?

    I can’t believe how many people argue FOR pollution. Polluters will pay with their profits or we will run them out of the country. Let them move to Dubai with the other America haters.

  4. clandross says:

    Nobody is for pollution “Land”, but the EPA is acting as though the emissions are life threatening, which they aren’t. All rhetoric. This is about control, nothing more. Want to see irresponsible polluting? Go to any other country in the world for the most part. Mexico, South America, India, China, Russia, Africa. 50 years behind in regulations to limit sulfates, etc. We as a people are going to penalize ourselves out of existence.

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