Emissions reductions efforts could improve Central Oklahoma air quality; help region meet standards
The Central Oklahoma region ended the 2016 ozone season with a regional ozone value of 0.068, under the proposed Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standard of 0.070. The current standard is 0.075.
In addition, the region is now under the proposed standard based upon three year averages of ozone Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ) monitoring data. Governor Fallin has sent a letter to EPA requesting that each of Oklahoma’s 77 counties be designated attainment/unclassifiable for the revised ozone standards.
Oklahoma Air Quality Partnerships
The Association of Central Oklahoma Governments (ACOG) works in partnership and cooperation with local, state and federal partners including ODEQ, National Weather Service, and EPA to assure compliance with National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) through a variety of public outreach and emissions reductions programs designed to improve air quality in Central Oklahoma.
Between May and September, emissions called volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) released from internal combustion engines chemically react in sunlight on hot, windless days and form ground-level ozone, a major component of smog. When weather conditions project the possibility of high ground-level ozone, the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality declares an Ozone Alert Day.
Ozone Alert Days mean air pollution is expected to reach unhealthy ranges. Ozone exposure is a health risk to the entire population but particularly sensitive are children, the elderly, anyone with respiratory or cardiovascular illnesses and anyone who experiences prolonged exposure.
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