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Air Quality Program

Paths to Cleaner Air

Air monitoring

Good air quality is important to your health and the environment. Federal and state agencies set air quality standards for outdoor air. The purpose of these standards is to prevent air pollution from reaching levels that hurt human health. When an area does not meet an air quality standard, the state must develop a plan to clean up the air.

Have you ever looked out expecting to see a breathtaking view of Mount Rainier or the North Cascades, and been disappointed to see an ugly brown or pinkish haze ruining the view? It's called "regional haze" and it's air pollution.

There are many air pollutants that can directly affect your health through breathing, such as ground-level ozone and fine particles. The specific pollutant, its concentration in the air, the length of time of exposure, your own health conditions and the environmental quality of the area are all factors in how air pollution affects your health.

Air quality standards

Federal and state agencies set air quality standards for outdoor air to prevent air pollution from reaching levels that hurt human health.

Clean Power Plan

States are required to develop and submit a plan to EPA that shows how the Federal Clean Power Plan Rule will be implemented to reduce greenhouse gases from power plants.

Grants and loans

Find out about Ecology programs that manage grants and loans to improve Air Quality.

Regional haze

Haze is caused when tiny particles in the air absorb and scatter sunlight, reducing the clarity and color of what we see.

State implementation plan (SIP)

A State Implementation Plan (SIP) describes how the state implements, maintains, and enforces National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).

 


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