US sets new ozone standards, but dismisses advice

The US Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday lowered the allowable amount of smog-forming ozone, but to a level significantly higher than what scientific advisers had urged, the Washington Post reported on Thursday.

The EPA has reduced the allowable amount of ozone in the air to 75 parts per billion (ppb). But nearly a year ago, the report said, the agency’s Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee recommended the standard was set no higher than 70 ppb, urging a limit as low as 60
ppb should be considered.

The standards dictate the amount of nitrogen oxides and other chemical compounds that are allowed to come out of vehicles, manufacturing facilities and power plants in the US. A slew of industries had recently urged White House officials in private meetings to keep the ozone limit at 80 ppb in order to minimize the cost of installing pollution controls, the report said.

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