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A Breath of Fresh Air

11/14/2017

Mecklenburg CountyEarlier this month, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) announced it has determined that air quality in Mecklenburg County complies with the newest federal health-based standard for ground-level ozone.  Therefore, USEPA will designate Mecklenburg County as “attainment,” along with all counties in North Carolina and South Carolina. 

This is the first time that the Charlotte region has ever attained a new National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone at the time of initial USEPA designations.  That makes this a historic designation for our county and region, which have a history of unhealthy ozone pollution.

Air quality in the Charlotte region has dramatically improved over the past 30 years due to federal and state regulatory measures and innovative local programs that reduced pollution by encouraging voluntary actions by businesses and citizens, like Grants to Replace Aging Diesel Engines (GRADE). 

“I’m proud that local efforts have contributed to this historic attainment designation,” said Leslie Rhodes, director of Mecklenburg County Air Quality. "In addition to enforcing regulatory requirements, our agency will continue to promote voluntary strategies that result in healthy air for our citizens.” 

View air pollution reductions tips.