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Ozone violators increase.

Ozone violators increase

One repercussion of last summer's parching heat appears to be a dramatic increase in the number of cities or regions exceeding the U.S. smog-ozone standard. Though final 1988 air-monitoring data are not due at the Environmental Protection Agency until July, EPA announced last week that preliminary information indicates it will have to add 28 new areas to its list of regions surpassing the national ambient-air-quality standard for ozone-an increase of 41 percent in ozone violators. The potential new violators include areas as populous as Denver (1.8 million) and as rural as Greenbrier County, W. Va. (39,000).

Ozone, the primary irritant is smog, forms in the lower atmosphere when sunlight reacts with hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides. Hot, clear days accelerate ozone production. Environmentalists anticipate the new data may spur policymakers revising the Clean Air Act to write in tougher sanctions for violators -- especially for those lacking strict ozone-control plans.
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Publication:Science News
Date:Feb 25, 1989
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