Air Quality Management Laws

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Air Quality Management Laws (US)

After an exhaustive search through numerous credible sources and implementing various research strategies, it appears that sufficient information on the states and cities in the United States that have proposed or enacted air quality management laws similar to California's AB 617 bill is unavailable in the public domain.

Helpful Findings

AB 617 Bill

  • Enacted in 2017, the AB 617 was established to safeguard communities suffering due to air pollution.
  • The AB 617 bill includes emission reporting, penalty provisions for those that pollute, and air monitoring at the community-level, etc.
  • Also, the 2018 budget for the AB 617 bill was approximately $10.7 million, along with a $100,000 additional general fund.


Relevant Insights on Air Quality Management Laws

Clean Air Act

  • In the year 1970, the U.S. Congress enacted the Clean Air Act, which is regulated by the EPA, to implement an adequate air quality management system across the country.
  • The proposed FY 2019 budget for the Clean Air Act is approximately $409.589 million.
  • This act includes the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) and the Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAP) programs, among others.
  • The most polluted states in the United States include California, New York, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Texas, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Indiana, and Montana.
  • Under the Clean Air Act, Arizona has installed an air quality monitoring network, approved air quality permits to various industries, and administered different air quality plans, as well as implemented programs such as the Vehicle Emissions Control Section and the Agricultural Dust Program.
  • The Alaska Air Quality Control Regulations - 18 AAC 50 was developed to address the Amendments to the Clean Air Act in 1972.


Research Strategy:

Our research began by learning about the AB 617 bill and its budget. Afterward, we consulted government websites and statute databases to locate similar air quality laws on sites such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), Gov Track, etc. From this search, we discovered that the U.S. Congress enacted the Clean Air Act in 1970, and it is regulated by the EPA to administer an effective air quality management system throughout the nation. However, we could not locate specific laws for individual states or cities.

Later, we attempted to identify the most polluted states/counties across the United States and laws implemented/proposed to address their air pollution. We discovered that the most polluted states include California, New York, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Texas, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Indiana, and Montana. We believed that these states would act on pollution control and explored their air quality divisions to find laws similar to California's AB 617 bill. We found out that most of the states, including Washington, Alaska, and Arizona, follow the Clean Air Act, but we could not find other proposed or enacted laws, even after an exhaustive search through the assembly statutes and air quality divisions from all 50 states.

Next, we explored air pollution organizations in the U.S., hoping that they published some success stories or the latest updates on the implementation of air quality management laws in various states. We searched through sites for the Center for Clean Air Policy (CCAP), Citizens League for Environmental Action Now (CLEAN), Clean Air Initiative, Clean Air Revival, Inc., Clean Air Task Force, Clean Air Trust, Coalition for Clean Air (CCA), etc. However, most of the information focused on their work concerning air pollution, and there was nothing specific to air quality management laws.

Finally, we expanded the scope of our search beyond the 24-month standard timeline, using the strategies mentioned above. We theorized that states or cities could have either proposed or enacted air quality management laws before 2017. Nevertheless, we were unable to find any laws similar to California's AB 617 bill other than the Clean Air Act, which is implemented across the U.S.
Sources
Sources

Quotes
  • "The Alaska Air Quality Control Plan has been developed to satisfy the needs of Alaska, and to comply with the requirements of the 1970 Amendments to the Clean Air Act"