Attainment of EPA's Ozone Standard

T-RCED-87-8: Published: Apr 27, 1987. Publicly Released: Apr 27, 1987.

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GAO discussed its ongoing review of: (1) the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) efforts to protect the public health from ozone; and (2) states' compliance with EPA-established ozone standards. GAO found that: (1) EPA and the states failed to achieve the Clean Air Act's ozone reduction goals; (2) the various nonattainment areas differed according to the degree necessary to reduce emissions to meet standards; and (3) EPA was considering more flexible deadlines for some areas that could not attain the standards for many years. GAO believes that, before EPA implements such plans, it should: (1) evaluate the extent to which areas implement their control programs; (2) review existing control measure enforcement; (3) identify additional necessary measures; (4) publish guidelines for dealing with nonattainable areas; (5) address reluctance to implement controls that have economic impacts on lifestyles; and (6) take a more active decisionmaking role on the national impact of certain ozone levels.

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