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NTC U.S. & CANADA BILATERAL AIR QUALITY AGREEMENT

Release Date: 11/29/94
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NTC U.S. & CANADA BILATERAL AIR QUALITY AGREEMENT

FOR RELEASE: MONDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 1994

The United States and Canada today jointly released their second biennial Progress Report under the United States/Canada Bilateral Air Quality Agreement, dealing with acid rain and other air quality issues.

Both governments report significant progress protecting the environment and public health by reducing emissions that cause acid rain and contribute to cross-border air pollution.

However, the report also shows increasing nitrate concentrations in many lakes and streams in the Adirondack and Catskill Mountains of New York, the mid-Appalachian region of the United States, Ontario and Quebec. Nitrates come from acid rain in the atmosphere. Nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, from power plants and cars, and sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions, primarily from power plants, are the prime ingredients in the formation of acid rain.

The report also discusses the harmful effects of sulfur compounds on buildings and on visibility in U.S. national parks. Both countries are in the process of conducting studies on the need for and consequences of further emission reductions to protect sensitive ecosystems. The U.S. study was mandated under the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.

Additionally, the report addresses new inroads in scientific and technical cooperation between the two countries, as well as emission inventories and data trends from 1980 to 2010, and atmospheric modeling, monitoring and pollution control technologies.

The Progress Report was a cooperative effort between the governments of the United States and Canada. U.S. contributors include EPA, the U.S. Departments of State, Justice and Energy, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The next Progress Report is due in 1996.

For more information call Rosemary Wolfe of EPA's Acid Rain Division at 202-233-9176.

For copies of the report call the Acid Rain Hotline at 202-233- 9620.

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