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Find out more from the Center for Biological Diversity:
Black Carbon
Idaho Statesman, February 1, 2010

Idaho, four other western states named in EPA lawsuit
By Cynthia Sewell

The Center for Biological Diversity today filed a notice of intent to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for failing to meet numerous deadlines for limiting dangerous pollution from tiny airborne particles like soot and dust in Idaho, Alaska, Arizona, Montana and Nevada. In some cases, the deadline for EPA action passed more than 10 years ago.

In Idaho, specifically, the EPA failed to make PM-10 attainment designation for Bonner County in North Idaho and Fort Hall Indian Reservation in East Idaho.

Particulate matter, also known as PM-10, is air pollution made up of tiny particles smaller than 10 microns in diameter (about 10 times smaller than the width of the average human hair). These particles can travel deep into the lungs when breathed, posing serious risks to human health.

The EPA has violated the Clean Air Act by failing to determine the states are complying with existing standards designed to protect the public from air pollution, and by failing to ensure that states are implementing legally required plans to meet the standards, according to the Arizona-based nonprofit organization.

"EPA has failed to follow through on keeping the West's air clean and free from dangerous pollution," said Center attorney Kevin Bundy. "The Clean Air Act works to protect the environment and public health, but both EPA and the states need to do their part and comply with the law."

The Center's letter demands that EPA correct these violations or face litigation.

Photo © Paul S. Hamilton