EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy:
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy Explains Proposed Smog Standards To Protect Americans’ Health
Her editorial, published at CNN.com, explains the new regulations:
For 44 years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has defended the American people’s right to breathe clean air by setting national air quality standards for common air pollutants.
Successful public health protection depends on the latest science. Think of it this way: If your doctor wasn’t using the latest medical science, you’d be worried you weren’t getting the best care.
That’s why the Clean Air Act requires EPA to update air quality standards every five years, to ensure standards “protect public health with an adequate margin of safety” based on the latest scientific evidence.
So today, following science and the law, I am proposing to update national ozone pollution standards to clean up our air, improve access to crucial air quality information, and protect those most at-risk — our children, our elderly, and people already suffering from lung diseases like asthma. […]
Ground-level ozone pollution, commonly known as smog, comes from industrial action, motor vehicles, power plants, and other activities. Breathing ozone irritates the nose, throat, and lungs. Thousands of scientific studies (from renowned institutions like Harvard University, the University of North Carolina Medical School, and many others) tell us that cutting air pollution to meet ozone standards lowers the risk of asthma, permanent lung damage, cardiovascular harm, and premature death.