Climate Change Report Draft Released
November 2008 - On November 12, the COG Board approved the National Capital Region Climate Report, which includes significant greenhouse gas reduction goals for the region. The Board's actions are detailed in the press release. COG members, stakeholders and the public were invited to review the draft plan. The report was revised to reflect comments received. View the Final Report.
Quality Particulate Plan Approved
March 2008 - The Metropolitan Washington Air Quality Committee (MWAQC) has approved a new air quality plan to reduce fine particle pollution in the region. MWAQC’s new plan goes beyond Clean Air Act requirements in an effort to gain further reductions in fine particle pollution. Fine particle pollution is a mixture of microscopic solids and liquid droplets suspended in air. At 2.5 microns in diameter, the small particles can get deep into lungs and even the bloodstream. People with heart or lung disease, older adults and children are at greater risk from this type of pollution.
The plan, adopted March 7, 2008, will be submitted by the states to EPA to meet the April 5, 2008 deadline. The plan is available on the COG website.
Fourth Edition of Air Quality Newsletter
2008 - COG has published the fourth edition of Air Currents, a periodical discussing issues that the
Metropolitan Washington Air Quality Committee (MWAQC) is currently
facing. It is designed to inform MWAQC members about air quality
planning and progress in the months between regular MWAQC meetings.
MWAQC Releases New Air Quality Plan for Comment
January 2008 - the Metropolitan
Washington Air Quality Committee (MWAQC) has approved for comment an air quality plan to reduce fine particle pollution in the region. Fine particle pollution is a mixture of microscopic solids and liquid droplets suspended in air. At 2.5 microns in diameter, the small particles can get deep into lungs and even the bloodstream. People with heart or lung disease, older adults and children are at greater risk from this type of pollution. View the press release for more detail.
The states' comment period will end with public hearings in the region January 28 - February 11. View the flyer for exact times. The plan is available on the COG website for review. Comments may be submitted via e-mail.
Quality Plan Approved
May 2007 -On May 23, the Metropolitan
Washington Air Quality Committee (MWAQC) approved its air
quality plan for the region, paving the way for state air agencies
to submit the plan to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA) for approval. The Plan, called a State Implementation Plan
(SIP), presents air quality data showing the region will meet
the federal standard for ozone -- a harmful gas formed when the
sun heats polluted air -- by the fall of 2009. Board approval
of the plan followed a 30-day period for public comment that ended
in April. Today's decision comes at the start of ozone season,
when air quality forecasts are available daily. You may
view the plan.
EPA Approves Portion of SIP
January 12, 2005 - In
January EPA approved the Washington region’s Rate of Progress
portion of the recently submitted “Severe Area SIP.”
The approval includes approval of the contingency measures, transportation
control measures, VMT offset analysis, and control measures, including
voluntary measures. EPA expects to act on the attainment demonstration
portion of the SIP in the next month. View the Federal
Register notice of EPA’s proposed approval.
Designation of Non-Attainment
for Fine Particles
April 5, 2005 - On April
5, 2005, the Washington, DC region’s designation as nonattainment
for fine particles (PM2.5) became effective. The counties
and cities included in the Washington, DC-MD-VA PM2.5
nonattainment area are the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia
(Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, Loudoun Counties, and the
cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Manassas and Manassas
Park, and the Maryland counties of Charles, Frederick, Montgomery
and Prince George’s. EPA still plans to issue guidance for
implementing the new standard. Visit the EPA
Fine Particle (PM 2.5) Designations page for more information.
EPA Action on Region's Air
May 13, 2005 - EPA approved the Virginia and
District of Columbia 's one-hour ozone air quality plan (“Severe
Area SIP”) to meet the Clean Air Act requirements for a severe
ozone nonattainment area. EPA disapproved the Maryland plan with
a protective finding for the mobile emissions budget, so the budget
can be used for determining conformity for the Transportation
Improvement Plan (TIP).
EPA plans to revoke the one-hour standard on June 15, 2005. The
Metropolitan Washington Air Quality Committee (MWAQC) is developing
a new air quality plan to meet the 8-hour ozone standard. The
Metropolitan Washington region was designated as in moderate non-attainment
of the 8-hour ozone standard and has a deadline of June 2010 to
meet the new ozone standard. Visit the SIP
page for more EPA rulings.