Air pollution comes from many different sources such as factories, power plants, dry cleaners, cars, buses, trucks and even windblown dust and wildfires. Air pollution can threaten the health of human beings, trees, lakes, crops, and animals, as well as damage the ozone layer and buildings. Air pollution also can cause haze, reducing visibility in national parks and wilderness areas. EPA protects human health and the environment through the regulatory process and voluntary programs such as Energy Star and Commuter Choice. Under the Clean Air Act, EPA sets limits on how much of a pollutant is allowed in the air anywhere in the United States. Although national air quality has improved over the last 20 years, many challenges remain in protecting public health and the environment. EPA's goal is to have clean air to breathe for this generation and those to follow.
There are a number of different pollutants that are regulated by the EPA, such as;
- Nitrogen Oxides (NOx)
- Particulate Matter (PM)
- Sulfur Oxides (SO2)
- Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)
Ground-level ozone is a growing concern in metro areas like Springfield. Click on the Ozone link on the left for more information.