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San Antonio Air Quality Is Out Of Attainment


San Antonio's air quality is unacceptable by Environmental Protection Agency standards. Measurements taken at one site in San Antonio shows unacceptable ozone levels.

The EPA set a new, more stringent, ozone standard last year. Compliance with that standard is based on a three year averaging formula from 2014 to 2016. Because of data collected in previous years San Antonio needed to have really low numbers this year to meet the new standards.

“It didn’t take long at all. Our ozone season began April 1 and within the first week or so of the ozone season we had numbers that were high enough to now put us out of compliance with that new ozone standard,” said Brenda Williams, Director of Natural Resources for the Alamo Area Council of Governments.

There are incentives to continue to try and reduce air pollution. Requirements for compliance will depend on the level of pollution detected according to Williams.

“Those dictate how much effort and how many controls and what types of controls and what types of planning a region has to do to bring themselves back into compliance. Of course the more severe the category the more that has to be done.”

At this point, San Antonio's pollution would be considered marginal. The EPA could move forward with its designations in late 2017. However, a lawsuit over the new ozone standards filed by Texas and other states is pending.

Steve joined the Texas Public Radio news team in 2009, and serves as TPR's Assistant News Director and afternoon anchor. You can hear him Monday-Friday from 3-7pm on KSTX 89.1 FM. Steve is a veteran of radio news in South Texas, having worked for commercial stations in the San Antonio area since the late 1980s.