Environment Rhode Island Applauds Step Forward to Help Americans Breathe Easier

For Immediate Release

Washington, DC—Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed new limits on ambient levels of ozone, the pollutant that can trigger headaches, nausea, asthma attacks and in the worst cases, premature death.

EPA proposed lowering the acceptable concentration of ozone in the air from 75 parts per billion, “to a standard in the range of 65-70 parts per billion, while taking public comment on a level as low as 60.” Independent scientists as well as health and medical societies had recommended a standard of 60 parts per billion.

Ozone, sometimes known as smog, is particularly threatening to children, the elderly, and those with heart and lung disease, but can also impact normal, healthy adults. Environment Rhode Island’s Washington D.C. Office Director, Anna Aurilio, issued the following statement responding to EPA’s proposal:

“No one should have to worry that the air they breathe will make them sick, but that’s been the case for far too long for millions of Americans. We applaud EPA’s step forward to help children, the elderly, and all Americans breathe a little easier. It's important to note that the door isn’t closed for us to get the maximum protection we deserve from dangerous air pollution. We encourage everyone who wants clean, healthy air to comment in favor of the standard scientists say is necessary to protect public health.”