Jeff Flake - U.S. Senator ~ Arizona

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) today introduced the Air Designation Actions in Areas of Pollutant Transport (ADAAPT) Act. This bill, which is supported by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, would amend the Clean Air Act to address issues created by the unattainable air quality regulatory burdens placed on rural and international transport areas.

Specifically, this bill would alleviate “background ozone,” which is ozone pollution that is present in a region but does not come from local, human-produced sources. The current standard forces states like Arizona to regulate ozone emissions that are beyond its control, especially in international and interstate air pollution transport areas. The ADAAPT Act would fix this problem by:

  1. Providing states with assurances of timely approvals or disapprovals of state submittals seeking regulatory relief for nonattainment areas impacted by international transport or that qualify as a rural transport area.
  2. Permitting local air pollution control agencies in nonattainment areas to substitute the best available control technology, as defined in Section 169 of the Clean Air Act, for the lowest achievable emissions rate.
  3. Removing the criteria that limits a rural transport designation from only being available to a nonattainment area that is not included in, and is not adjacent to, a Metropolitan Statistical Area or a Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area.

“In addition to contributing to economic strain while providing negligible health benefits, the current ozone standard harms Arizona by forcing the state to regulate ozone emissions that are out of its jurisdiction,” said Flake. “This bill will deliver assistance to rural areas seeking regulatory relief from this unattainable standard.”

To view a PDF of the bill, click here.

Background:

  • On September 27, 2016, Flake and members of the Arizona congressional delegation sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency to express concerns over background ozone’s role in the unattainable 2015 ozone standard, which would bring irreparable harm to Arizona’s economy. To view the full text of the letter, click here.

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