Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Trump's Unclean Air Act

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made drastic changes to the way it will enforce clean air regulations which means that the air you breathe could be about to get a lot more dangerous. Thousands of factories, power plants and mining smelters are currently forced to use maximum achievable control technologies (MACT) to reduce the amount of toxic pollution that they release. The EPA's new rules will allow these facilities to avoid having to use these MACT, while polluting the air of their local communities.

The Union of Concerned Scientists has created two interactive maps to help explain how the EPA's roll back on clean air protections could effect the air that you breathe. One of the maps shows all of the facilities that could be affected be the EPA's changes. These facilities are shown on the map by red dots. The size of the dots indicates the potential increase in tons of hazardous air pollutants that the facility might produce under the EPA's new rules.

The other interactive map uses a choropleth layer to visualize the potential emissions increases by congressional district. If you select a district on this map you can view the number of facilities in the area currently protected by MACT and the additional tons of hazardous air pollutants per year that these facilities could now get away with polluting.

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