The Quality of Life and Environment (QOLE) committee of the Dallas City Council voted to send a Resolution asking the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) to re-evaluate the draft State Implementation Plan (SIP), currently under review, for additional measures that can help the D-FW Region reach attainment for ozone to the full City Council for adoption.
The City’s Office of Environmental Quality briefed the committee on the current regulatory situation in the D-FW Region as it pertains to ozone, formed from a chemical reaction between nitrogen oxides – from combustion of fossil fuels – and volatile organic compounds in the presence of heat from sunlight. Currently, the D-FW Region is in “non-attainment”, exceeding the current ozone standard of 75 parts per billion (ppb) with a 2015 level of 83 ppb. Without greater effort, the Region stands to remain in “non-attainment” which, depending on how high ozone levels reach, could result in economic sanctions and reduced funding from the federal government, in addition to continuing degradation of air quality and threats to human health.
The committee voted to advance the Resolution calling for the TCEQ and state agencies to revise the proposed SIP, reduce emissions from stationary sources, hold a cooperative discussion with EPA and the City of Dallas to explore practical solutions for the Region, and explore options to expand renewable energy, including net-metering and the development of eco-districts or district energy, and the City of Dallas to support the EPA’s Clean Power Plan to help reduce ozone levels.