The tougher federal regulations on fine particle pollution proposed Friday by the Environmental Protection Agency should have no immediate effect on Pierce County’s struggle to stay within air quality standards.
The EPA wants to reduce the annual standard for soot to 12 to 13 micrograms per cubic meter from the current annual standard, 15 micrograms per cubic meter.
The Tacoma area’s air already meets that proposed annual standard. Where the City has problems is not with the annual standard, but with daily spikes of fine-particle pollution, caused mainly by wood burning stoves.
The EPA has a separate standard for 24-hour fine particle pollution, which is 35 micrograms per cubic meter.
That standard, set in 2006, would not change under the latest proposal.