The air quality in New Jersey and in our multi-state nonattainment areas has significantly improved due in part to your efforts. The Northern nonattainment area is very close to being able to avoid emission fee penalties (Section 185 of the Federal Clean Air Act). The Southern nonattainment area is very close to meeting the old 8-hour ozone NAAQS of 85 parts per billion (ppb). Both areas need one more year of clean data to achieve these clean air goals and make progress towards achieving the current 75 ppb standard.
In January 2010, based on new scientific evidence of the health effects from ground-level ozone, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) proposed to lower the current ozone NAAQS from 75 ppb to a value in the range of 60-70 ppb. Plans will be leveraged over the next several years to achieve the new standard after adoption.
Taking actions to reduce emissions now, and especially on the days forecasted to be unhealthy, will help us all breathe cleaner air. To assist you in the matter, the Division of Air Quality will be taking advantage of the technology developed by the USEPA to provide daily air quality forecasts in April. EnviroFlash (http://www.enviroflash.info) is an e-mail alert system that delivers critical air quality information straight to your email inbox. Subscribers enter their e-mail address and ZIP code, and select the type of message they want to receive. You can receive alerts about the local Air Quality Index (AQI) each day or only when the air quality is expected to be unhealthy so you can limit strenuous physical activity (such as jogging), as well as avoid activities which increase air pollution (such as mowing the lawn).
The Division of Air Quality thanks you for all your past efforts and looks forward to working with you towards a cleaner tomorrow.