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AQMD APPLAUDS EPA DECISION TO ALLOW TIGHTER AUTO STANDARDS

 DIAMOND BAR, Calif., Jan. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- A decision by the Environmental Protection Agency to approve a waiver for California to impose tighter auto pollution standards than federal mandates was applauded by regional air quality officials today.
 "This is very good news for California and the Southland because it allows us to continue to require tighter restrictions on cars in an area with the worst smog in the nation," said South Coast Air Quality Management District Executive Officer James M. Lents.
 "EPA's approval of the California waiver is essential to our 20-year air quality clean-up plan," continued Lents. "The plan calls for progressively cleaner cars, and by 2003, 10 percent of the cars sold in the state must be electric. Without the waiver, we would not have been able to set these standards, and we would continue to breathe dirty air."
 Other states with pollution problems such as New York and Massachusetts have already adopted California's standards, and other states including Maine, Virginia, Texas and Illinois are considering them.
 For a number of years, Congress has allowed California to impose tighter auto emissions standards than the federal requirements because of the severity of the area's air pollution problem. Recently, auto manufacturers challenged the government's authority to grant such a waiver.
 -0- 1/7/93
 /CONTACT: Claudia Keith of South Coast Air Quality Management District, 909-396-3456/


CO: South Coast Air Quality Management District; Environmental
 Protection Agency ST: California IN: AUT SU:


MS-LS -- LA043 -- 2883 01/07/93 19:41 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 7, 1993
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