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Technology Transfer Network - Air Toxics Web Site

National Air Toxics Program Integrated Urban Strategy

Purpose of Briefing

  • Provides background on National Air Toxics Program
  • Presents overview of the Urban Strategy
  • Discusses next steps in implementing the Strategy
What are Air Toxics?
  • 188 compounds listed in the Clean Air Act -like Benzene, Dioxin and Mercury
  • Pollutants that cause or may cause cancer or other serious health effects
  • Pollutant that deposit on soil or in water and impact ecological systems
  • Air toxics are emitted from large industry, small sources, and mobile sources
The Clean Air Act calls for:
  • Step I:  Broad toxic emission reductions from MACT standards and incidental reductions from mobile source standards and other CAA programs
  • Step II:  Residual Risk standards, Urban air toxics strategy, Mobile source study and standards
National Air Toxics Program Components
  • Source-specific standards and sector-based standards
  • National, regional, and community-based initiatives to focus on multimedia and cumulative risks
  • National Air Toxics Assessments
  • Education and outreach
Reductions in Air Toxics

Significant Reductions Since 1990

  • Stationary source regulations have reduced air toxics by over 1 million tons per year from 1990 levels (e.g., chemical plants, refineries, steel mills).
  • Mobile source requirements also reduce air toxics (e.g., lead phaseout from gasoline, reformulated gasoline, new vehicle emission standards)
Air Toxics Program:  Where Are We Headed?
  • Considering cumulative risk:  multi-pollutant, multi-source, multi-pathway
  • Integrating authorities to address all risks from all sources of toxics
  • Identifying and addressing disproportionate risks--geographic and demographic
Unique Concerns About Urban Air
  • Concentration of people and multiple sources leading to potentially high exposures
  • Sensitive populations, e.g., children, elderly, and people with existing respiratory problems
  • Larger percentages of minority and low-income populations in urban areas
What is the Urban Air Toxics Strategy?
  • Focuses on reducing cumulative risk from all sources in urban areas from stationary and mobile sources
  • Presents goals for reducing risks
  • Provides road map of activities over several years to attain goals
Urban Stategy - Goals

75% reduction in cancer "incidences"

  • Scope - all air toxics, stationary sources, urban areas nationwide, all laws
"Substantial" reduction in noncancer risks
  • Scope - all air toxics, small (area) sources, urban areas nationwide, all laws
Address disproportionate impacts of air toxics hazards across urban areas (e.g., on children, elderly, environmental justice communities)
  • Scope - all air toxics, emission sources (small, large, and mobile) and indoor air
Urban Strategy - Standards

List of 33 polutants of greatest concern - from small, large and mobile sources

Partial list of small industries for regulation

  • 13 new sources categories
  • Additional categories will be listed no later than 2003
Mobile source activities
  • study and determination of the need for any additional fuel or vehicle standards
  • preparation of risk assessment document for diesel particulate matter
Large (major) source avtivities
  • Continue regulatory efforts
  • Coordinate with analysis of residual risk
Urban Strategy - Assessments and Risk Initiatives

Iterative assessments to measure progress and determine priorities

  • National scale - ASPEN screening model, spring 2000
  • Local scale - to support local initiatives
  • Improve data and tools - ambient monitoring network, research
Work in partnerships with state/local/tribal authorities to develop programs that address the goals of the Strategy
  • Community-based pilot projects
  • Clean Air Act Partnership Fund projects
  • Build on existing risk assessments
  • Draw on information from other federal projects (e.g., Persistend, Bioaccumulative Toxics Initiative and Mercury Action Plan)
Urban Strategy - Education and Outreach

Key Stakeholders

  • State and local governments
  • Communities
  • Mayors
  • Environmental groups
  • Small Businesses
  • Industry
  • Air Toxics Monitoring Network
  • NATA assessments
  • Program development
  • Standards devlopment
Urban Strategy Products Status

Federal Register notice announcing the Strategy -- consent decree deadline of July 1, 1999 for signature

Reports to Congress

  • Act requires two reports, 8 and 12 years after enactment
  • First report scheduled for August
Next Steps
  • Outreach to the public and interested stakeholders - this summer
  • Initial national air toxics assessments - under way
  • Review results of assessments and present to the public - Spring 2000
  •    Determine priorities for standards - Spring 2000
  •    Work with State/local/tribal agencies on roles and build State programs
  • Initiate individual urban assessments
  • Initiate standards development

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