EPA Prepares to Strengthen Air Quality Standards for Lead

Public hearings slated.

The Environmental Protection Agency announced May 1 that it would take steps to revise the nations air quality standards for lead. The proposed change to the primary standard to protect public health recommends revising the existing standard of 1.5 micrograms per cubic meter of air to a level within the range of 0.10 to 0.30 micrograms per cubic meter. The agency will consider comments on alternative levels within a range from less than 0.10 to 0.50 micrograms per cubic meter.

The EPA is proposing that the secondary standard, to protect the environment, mimic the primary standard.

The EPA will accept public comment for 60 days after the proposal appears in the Federal Register. In addition, the agency will hold two public hearings on June 12. One is slated for St. Louis and the other will be held in Baltimore.

EPA will issue a final decision on the lead standard by Sept. 15, 2008.

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