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EPA redesignates14 Ohio counties to attainment of ozone standard

Release Date: 09/15/2009
Contact Information: William Omohundro, 312-353-8254,omohundro.william@epa.gov

For Immediate Release
No. 09-OPA169

(Chicago – Sept. 15, 2009) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 announced today it has approved a request by the state of Ohio to redesignate eight counties in the Cleveland-Akron-Lorain area and six counties in the Columbus area to attainment of the national health-based eight-hour outdoor air quality standard for ozone (smog).

The counties in the Cleveland-Akron-Lorain area are Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage and Summit. The counties in the Columbus area are Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, Knox, Licking and Madison.

EPA said complete, quality-assured, outdoor air monitoring data from the counties for 2006, 2007 and 2008 meet the standard. Preliminary 2009 air quality data show that the areas continue to meet the 8-hour ozone standard.

The agency also approved the state plan to continue to meet the eight-hour health-based ozone standard through 2020 and the motor vehicle emissions budgets included in the plan.

The action was published in today’s Federal Register and is effective upon publication.

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.

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