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EPA: 5 more Michigan counties meet ozone standard

Release Date: 12/27/2006
Contact Information: Karen Thompson, (312) 353-8547,

No. 06-OPA240

(CHICAGO - Dec. 27, 2006) - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 announced today that five more Michigan counties are meeting the health-based eight-hour outdoor air quality standard for ground-level ozone (smog) and proposed to approve a request by Michigan to redesignate the counties to attainment of the national ambient air quality standard. In late November, EPA proposed to redesignate 11 Michigan counties to attainment of the standard.

In this proposal, EPA would redesignate Genesee and Lapeer counties in the Flint area, Muskegon County in the Muskegon area, Berrien County in the Benton Harbor area and Cass County.

EPA's proposed action is based on three years of complete, quality-assured, outdoor air monitoring data for 2004, 2005 and 2006.

EPA also proposed to approve a state plan to maintain the eight-hour health-based ozone standard for at least the next 10 years and to approve motor vehicle emissions budgets for these counties.

EPA's action will soon be officially proposed in the Federal Register. The public will have 30 days to comment on the proposed action after it is published. Comments may be entered at Refer to docket ID No. EPA-R05-OAR-2006-MI-0563 and follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Comments may also be sent by
e-mail to, or faxed to (312) 886-5824. For additional information, contact Charles Hatten at (312) 886-6031.

Ground-level ozone is commonly referred to as smog. Smog is formed when a mixture of pollutants react on warm, sunny days. The pollutants are released from cars, factories and a wide variety of other sources. Smog can cause respiratory problems, including coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath and chest pain.

8-Hour Ground-level Ozone Designations:

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