San Antonio Ramps Up Air Quality Efforts After Poor Showing

San Antonio's soon-to-be-adopted air quality plan will focus on transportation to reduce the city's air pollution.

2 minute read

July 25, 2015, 9:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

Scott Huddleston reports that the San Antonio City Council "is moving toward adopting an air quality plan in November that includes measures the city has studied for years, including anti-idling restrictions for cars, trucks and train engines" in response to a report finding the second worse air quality in the state for the past three years. Only Dallas-Fort Worth rated worse.

"Under methods applied by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, San Antonio had a three-year average for ozone of 80 parts per billion, compared with 81 ppb in the Dallas area and 80 in Houston — the other Texas city in noncompliance," adds Huddleston.

San Antonio has a recorded value of 74 ppb, just below the current EPA standard of 75 ppb, during the 2015 ozone season. The EPA is expected to adopt a more stringent standard of 60 to 70 ppb as early as October, when the 2015 season ends.

In addition to the details about the current ratings of San Antonio, in context with the other major Texas metropolitan areas, Huddleston also provides more details about the city's air quality plan:

"In preparing its air quality plan, the city has worked with Environ, a consultant contracted by the TCEQ. The city estimates San Antonio can eliminate 354 tons annually of nitrogen oxides, a key culprit in smog formation, through local transportation strategies that encourage car-pooling, bicycling, bus transit and other commuter habits that reduce exhausts."

Wednesday, July 22, 2015 in San Antonio Express-News

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