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EPA Honors Winners of Eighth Annual Clean Air Excellence Awards –Gila River Indian Community recognized

Release Date: 05/28/2008
Contact Information: Margot Perez-Sullivan, (415) 947-4149, perezsullivan.margot@epa.gov

(Washington, D.C. - May 28, 2008) What do two California ports, a company that produced the first diesel electric hybrid tugboat, and a university in Georgia have in common? All are dedicated to excellence in achieving clean air, and tonight they are among the 11 winners of the eighth annual Clean Air Excellence Awards. This year’s award winners will be recognized by EPA for their outstanding accomplishments in improving air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

“This year’s Clean Air Excellence Award winners’ dedication to creating a cleaner tomorrow is truly a breath of fresh air,” said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. “From local to state governments, companies to citizen groups, these award-winners are helping EPA deliver healthier air and healthier lives to all Americans.”

The Clean Air Excellence Awards recognize and honor outstanding, innovative efforts that make progress in achieving cleaner air. The Awards were established in 2000, at the recommendation of the Clean Air Act Advisory Committee (CAAAC), a senior-level policy group that advises EPA on implementing the Clean Air Act.

There are four categories of awards: clean air technology, community action, education/outreach, and regulatory policy innovations, with one additional special award for individual achievement.

This year’s Arizona winner is for regulatory policy innovations made by the Gila River Indian Community Department of Environmental Quality Air Quality Program for developing the Gila River Indian Community Air Quality Management Plan. The Gila River Indian Community has developed the most comprehensive tribal plan to regulate air quality under the Clean Air Act. This multi-program Air Quality Management Plan was enacted into tribal law by the Gila River Indian Community Council in Dec. 2006.

The plan significantly reduces emissions by establishing regulatory requirements for stationary and area sources that did not exist and establishes three air quality monitoring stations located throughout the community. Gila River Indian Community air quality personnel measure ambient concentrations of criteria air pollutants for comparison against the National Ambient Air Quality Standards and toxics as a primary member of the Joint Air Toxics Assessment Project. Additionally, the plan contains a detailed preconstruction permitting program for non-major sources of air pollution that enables the community to regulate the construction and modification of such sources.

For a complete list of this year’s winners nationwide, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/air/caaac/recipients.html