Dallas Council Committee Votes for Air Quality Resolution, Heads for Full Council Vote in June

by jim on May 24, 2016

1children.cheering

 

SEND A "CLICK N SEND" EMAIL TO ALL 15 DALLAS CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS URGING THEM TO VOTE FOR CLEANER AIR IN JUNE

By a vote of 5 to 1 the City of Dallas moved closer to joining Dallas County in repudiating the State's do-nothing DFW clean air plan and demanding something better.

It was the second vote in less than a month to condemn an anti-smog strategy the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality claims gets DFW "close enough" to the current federal standard, but is criticized by clean air advocates as inadequate to end the region's chronic bad air problem.

In April U.S. Congressional Representatives Eddie Bernice Johnson and Marc Veasey asked the EPA to reject the State plan and write its own.

Council members Mark Clayton, Philip Kingston, Tiffini Young, and Rickey Callahan backed a wide-ranging air quality resolution sponsored by Quality of Life Committee Chair Sandy Greyson. Casting the lone no vote was Adam McGough

Greyson's resolution cites the EPA's conclusion "that the latest air quality State Implementation Plan (SIP) proposed by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) is not adequate to address the (the region's) ozone concentrations"

One reason given for the inadequacy is the plan doesn't touch major sources of air pollution affecting DFW including the East Texas coal plants, the Midlothian cement kilns and oil and gas facilities. The resolution specifically requests the state to follow the prescription laid out by UNT's landmark 2015 DFW ozone study, itself based on the State's own computer air model by adding off-the shelf control technology to those industrial sources.

Besides rejecting the state's plan, the resolution also takes issue with the State's assertion that lowering smog levels won't improve public health by specifically adding a provision stating "…studies have shown a direct correlation between health issues, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and higher levels of ozone…"

It also calls for more renewable energy, net metering and an endorsement of the Obama Administration's Clean Power Plan – a  2016 Dallas Omnibus Air Quality resolution. 

Nobody had anything nice to say about the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, and Councilman Philip Kingston was particularly pointed in his criticisms. During a discussion about Dallas taking  on some of TCEQ's enforcement duties, Kingston explained why the City preferred to to it themselves, rather than leave it up to the State: "Because they do the same thing with that responsibility as they do with all their responsibilities – they ignore them." Amen.

Texas Gov makes us sick

The resolution now goes to the full Dallas City Council for a final vote at one of two meetings before the summer break – either June 15th or June 22nd. Stay tuned for details. 

Meanwhile, RIGHT NOW  – you can send a quick e-mail toall 15 Dallas City Council members asking them to vote for the Greyson air quality resolution when it shows up on their doorstep. You can add a message of your own if you want. 

CLICK HERE TO TELL THE DALLAS CITY COUNCIL 

TO VOTE FOR CLEANER AIR 

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