Oregon holds workshop on new EPA standards
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ) is helping the state’s cities and counties prepare for stricter Environmental Protection Agency air quality standards for fine particulate matter. The new standards, which apply to smoke, soot or dust particles under 2.5 microns in diameter (PM2.5) and took effect on Dec. 18, are much more strict, so many communities may fall out of compliance, according to ODEQ.
In mid-December ODEQ held a workshop to explain the standards to a crowd that included many county commissioners and city managers. Workshop participants discussed the revised standards, air monitoring rules, how to interpret monitoring data, and heat and burn “smart” efforts under way in some communities. “The major focus should be on residential home heating, the biggest trigger for violations,” says Mike Gilroy with the Puget Sound Clean Air Authority, a speaker at the workshop.