In October 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) strengthened America's national air quality standard for ground-level ozone—more commonly known as smog. In order to move forward with the implementation of the revised standard, the Clean Air Act requires that EPA determine which areas of the country meet or exceed this standard by October, 2017. EPA can extend this timeframe only in limited circumstances—if the Administrator has insufficient information to promulgate these designations.
However in June of 2017 Scott Pruitt abruptly announced he was delaying implementation of the 2015 smog standard for one year, without identifying air quality information that was lacking. The decision puts the health of American families at risk by delaying implementation of the more protective 2015 ozone standards, which in turn, delays cleanup of harmful air pollution in areas of the country experiencing ozone levels that EPA has determined to be unhealthy.
EDF joined a broad coalition of public health and environmental groups asking the court to block Pruitt's unlawful delay and to ensure implementation of the more protective smog standards.
Litigation over delay of 2015 smog standards