From the office of Rep. Robert Dold (Ill., 10th District)…
Rep. Dold’s statement on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) announcement today that it will be including the 2011 air quality data in determining the attainment status for Northeastern Illinois:
“I am pleased with the decision by the EPA to include northeastern Illinois’ 2011 data when determining non-attainment status for ground-level ozone standards. This reversal will enable our region to continue to be eligible for federal environmental and transportation programs without causing harm to the progress in surface air quality we have made. I would like to thank my Illinois colleagues in both the Senate and the House for working with the United States EPA and Illinois EPA to make certain we build upon the success of these regional programs in the interest of public health.”
Rep. Dold, along with Representatives Schakowsky, Quigley, Lipinski, and Jackson, sent a bipartisan letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, urging the EPA to consider 2011 ozone data from the State of Illinois. A copy of the letter is attached. Today, the EPA announced that it will consider Illinois’ 2011 ozone data, which means northeastern Illinois will be eligible for federal funds from programs such as Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) which has been used to reduce traffic bottlenecks and promote alternative transportation methods such as biking. Northeastern Illinois will continue to build upon its progress to ensure a higher air quality for betterment of public health.
Click here for a link to the EPA’s revised response: http://www.epa.gov/ozonedesignations/2008standards/rec/eparesp/R5_IL_revresp.pdf
Click here for more background information from the State of Illinois on the importance of today’s EPA announcement: http://www.cmap.illinois.gov/policy-updates/-/blogs/northeastern-illinois-air-quality-attainment-status-change-could-result-in-lost-federal-funds-and-weakened-environmental-standards