Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C.

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The Region 6 Office of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) in a February 8th news release announced approval of the State of Arkansas’s State Implementation Plan (“SIP”) for administering programs related to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (“NAAQS”).

The approved SIP is an Infrastructure SIP (so named because it addresses “basic requirements of state air-quality management programs” involving air quality monitoring and enforcement).

The Clean Air Act provides that the states are primarily responsible for ensuring attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS once established by EPA. Each state is therefore required to formulate, subject to EPA approval, an implementation plan (i.e., SIP) designed to achieve each NAAQS. The SIPs will contain the measures and actions the state proposes to attain each NAAQS.

EPA Region 6 states it is approving Arkansas’s entire Infrastructure SIP “except for certain portions relating to interstate transport of air pollutants.” The federal agency states that these parts of the SIP will be “addressed in future, separate actions.”

The news release quotes Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality Director Becky Keogh as stating:

The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality appreciates EPA’s cooperative action in approving these essential components of our state air quality plan . . . Arkansas continues to benefit from the support of our federal partners.

A copy of the news release can be downloaded here.