Contacts: Laura Smith, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2162
Laurel Steffes, Department of Natural Resources, 608-266-8109
MADISON – Governor Jim Doyle today announced that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved his request to redesignate Door and Manitowoc Counties as in attainment with health standards for ozone, or smog. The EPA also approved Wisconsin’s plans to meet the ozone standard through 2020 and approved motor vehicle emission budgets for Manitowoc and Door counties.
“Under my Administration, we have taken strong action to reduce air pollution in Wisconsin and protect public health and the environment,” Governor Doyle said. “Meeting these standards not only means cleaner air, but also ensures that local businesses will be able to grow and create jobs.”
The EPA redesignated the counties’ attainment status based upon complete, quality-assured, outdoor air monitoring from 2006 to 2009 showing the two counties in compliance with the federal standards for ozone. Complete quality-assured monitoring data for 2009 show that the areas continue to meet the standard.
Last fall, Governor Doyle requested the EPA redesignate nine Wisconsin counties as in attainment of the ozone standard. The EPA also is expected to act on the other seven counties that have met federal smog standards. Those counties are: Sheboygan, Ozaukee, Washington, Milwaukee, Kenosha, Racine and Waukesha counties. Kewaunee County previously was designated as in compliance.
Since taking office, Governor Doyle has helped Wisconsin make major strides to reduce air pollution, implementing the Clean Air Interstate Rule, NOx Reasonable Available Retrofit Rule, and Best Available Retrofit Technology Rule. The Mercury Multi-Pollutant Rule that went into effect last year will substantially reduce sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide pollution throughout the state. In addition, the Governor announced last year that a new biomass boiler will be installed at the Charter Street Heating Plant as part of his commitment to stop burning coal at state-owned heating plants on Madison’s Isthmus. Ground will be broken on the project this year and should be complete by summer 2013.