DNR list will omit 10 state counties
Despite failure to avoid pollution, some given break
The Associated Press
MILWAUKEE - A state agency is preparing to recommend letting
10 counties avoid tougher pollution controls even though
those areas are pushing the federal limits for harmful
The state Department of Natural Resources would recommend
keeping 10 counties on a list of areas that fail to meet
the federal clean air standards but keeping another 10
counties off that list, said Lloyd Eagan, director of
the agency’s air management program.
Those counties that would not make the list are Winnebago,
Outagamie, Calumet, Brown, Columbia, Dane, Dodge, Fond
du Lac, Jefferson and Rock.
The 10 counties already on the list are in southeastern
Wisconsin and along Lake Michigan.
The DNR is preparing the recommendation for Gov. Jim
Doyle, who will make his own recommendations to the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA will issue the
final decision this spring.
The EPA requires more stringent pollution controls on
businesses, emissions tests on vehicles and other pollution
control efforts for areas on the list.
Business leaders in the counties on the bubble fought
the designation because they feared it would devastate
economic development in those areas.
Officials from two counties near the limits, Dane and
Rock, announced last week they would work voluntarily
to reduce emissions of the pollutants that form low-level
"It’s an approach, a moral commitment that we will
work together, government and business, to do what we
can to reduce pollution," said Dane County Executive
Excessive ozone amounts can cause respiratory problems
in healthy people and can worsen breathing problems for
people with asthma and other chronic lung conditions.
Eric Uram, regional officer for the Sierra Club Midwest
Region, said the voluntary efforts are welcome but they
won’t do as much as an EPA listing to push businesses
and counties to improve air quality.
Dan Leistikow, a spokesman for Doyle, said the governor
will make a decision after he evaluates the DNR report.
He has a July 15 deadline.