White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council Urges EPA to Strengthen Air Quality Standards
The White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council recently sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), urging them to significantly strengthen the national ambient air quality standards for particulate matter and ozone. The council emphasized that soot and smog disproportionately affect communities of color and low-income communities. By implementing these improved air quality regulations, it is estimated that thousands of deaths could be prevented, particularly benefiting overburdened communities. The advisory council called upon the EPA to listen to scientific recommendations and lower the allowable levels of fine particulate matter pollution (soot) to 8 micrograms per cubic meter annually and 25 micrograms per cubic meter daily, as well as ground-level ozone (smog) between 55 and 60 parts per billion. Strengthening air quality standards is crucial for advancing environmental justice and saving lives, especially considering the serious consequences of poor air quality on people's health.