Colorado won’t reduce its hazardous ozone levels voluntarily
Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission adopted an updated ozone State Implementation Plan, knowing full well that it will not effectively reduce ozone pollution across the North Front Range, or bring us into federal attainment. Commissioners voiced impatience with the pace at which the state’s Air Pollution Control Division is bringing concrete and meaningful proposals to the Commission to curb violations of the health-based federal standards. The good news is that the commission committed to taking another look at the State Implementation Plan in 2023. The commission decided that in 2023, stakeholders must meet to evaluate the most effective rules to effectively reduce unhealthy air pollution levels. Without further legislative action, or an effective plan for positive incentives that are guaranteed to reduce emissions in the near-term, ozone will continue to plague our region. Reducing pollution in the summer ozone season is most urgent. Expanding the adoption of non-emitting pneumatic devices for existing oil & gas operations to ensure progress continues uninterrupted beyond the current May 2023 schedule, Eliminating all routine venting and flaring from factories, as well as oil and gas drilling activities are some of the actions, whether enacted through legislation or rulemaking, would drastically improve our air quality.