Pennsylvania’s proposed new air rules generating furor

Harmful pollution emissions should be on their way out, not up.

In one state, Pennsylvania, as it pertains to proposed new smog rules that notion could quite possibly be turned upside down.

Bituminous coal
Bituminous coal

“The Sierra Club, the American Lung Association, the Clean Air Council, and other groups say that under the new emission limits, the state’s biggest emitters, coal-fired power plants would be allowed to release more than 130,000 tons of smog-causing nitrogen oxides annually,” Joanna M. Foster in “Will Pennsylvania’s Proposed Anti-Smog Regs Actually Create New Pollution Hot Spots?” stated. “That’s 40 percent more than they do now. Coal-fired power plants are responsible for about one-quarter of smog-causing pollutants in the state.”1

One step backward, no steps forward?

So, how is it that any regulations to reduce smog and whose aim I would presume is to improve air quality in Pennsylvania, can muck up the air there even more?

As explained by Foster, “Part of the problem is also that Corbett’s plan doesn’t require that individual facilities meet the standards, just that the power-plant operators comply ‘on average’ across their facilities. This means that certain areas could still experience hazardous smog even if the problem is no longer visible in official numbers.”2

The “Corbett” referenced here is Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett and that so-called “plan” refers to proposed new laws to move air quality levels into compliance with 2008 National Ambient Air Quality Standards.

At the end of the day should the proposed legislation in question come to pass and air overall worsens, this will not be good. Hopefully, the right resolution for the best possible outcome is the one that will be implemented.

Here’s hoping!


  1. This material was published by ThinkProgress, being the representative link.
  2. This material was published by ThinkProgress, being the representative link.

– Alan Kandel

1 thought on “Pennsylvania’s proposed new air rules generating furor”

  1. Rules and standard must be set aside to control factories and heavy industries from polluting the surrounding atmosphere. Thus, it is a good idea that they have restricted the amount of pollution to the atmosphere.

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