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EPA Says 211 Areas Exceed PM 2.5 Levels

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has notified 25 governors and 23 tribal leaders that areas in their states and tribal lands do not meet the daily standards for fine particle pollution, known as PM 2.5.

 

The EPA designated 211 counties and parts of counties as not meeting the standard. These areas are called non-attainment areas. The affected areas will be required to take steps to reduce fine particle pollution.

 

The EPA strengthened its 24-hour fine particle standards in 2006 to protect public health. Fine particles can be emitted directly or by forming in the atmosphere from reactions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides. Exposure to fine particle pollution can cause serious health problems.

 

In addition to stationary sources such as power plants and other industrial facilities that emit PM 2.5 and related pollutants, a potential source of PM 2.5 is abrasive blasting, if abrasive and paint debris are not adequately contained.

   

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