NC fighting tougher federal air pollution standard

Jan. 10, 2014 @ 04:42 PM

North Carolina is trying to force the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to back down on a new air quality rule.

The state Department of Environment and Natural Resources said Friday the challenge filed two weeks ago with a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., seeks to force the EPA to set a lower bar on soot and other air particulates. The state agency says the EPA is seeking to set 2010 as the starting point for measuring pollution reductions instead of the 1975 level previously in place.

State officials say the federal regulations would unfairly penalize North Carolina because they don't account for strides the state made in cleaning the air between 2002 and 2010.

DENR Secretary John Skvarla says the tougher measures could hamper North Carolina businesses.