Recent Developments from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

WASHINGTON, Aug. 23, 2002 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following are some recent
developments at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. For more
information on any of these subjects, call the appropriate contact:

-- EPA Improves Transportation Regulation
Contact: Cathy Milbourn, 202-564-7824,

EPA is changing transportation regulations to ease the process
that ensures federally supported highway and transit project
activities are consistent with or conform to a state's air quality
implementation plan.

Under the Clean Air Act, transportation activities cannot cause
new air quality violations, worsen existing violations, or delay
timely attainment of the national ambient air quality standards.
The first revision to the conformity rule incorporates an October
2000 Clean Air Act amendment that provides a one-year grace period
before conformity is required in areas that are designated
non-attainment for a given air quality standard for the first time.
The grace period will ease implementation of conformity in areas
that are newly designated under EPA's ozone and particulate matter
air quality standards issued in 1997. The one-year grace period
begins on the effective date of an area's designation as

The second change will help areas implement conformity in a
practicable manner consistent with a March 1999 decision by the
U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Court. As a result of
the Court's decision, the amount of time for state and local
governments to complete the conformity process when a new air
quality plan was submitted had, in some instances, been
significantly shortened.

The final rule addresses this indirect impact of the court
decision by ensuring that state and local governments have
sufficient time to meet the conformity requirement for newly
submitted air quality plans, as was the case prior to the 1999
court ruling.

The rule and supporting documents are available at (click on

-- EPA Details West Nile Virus Resources Available to Public
Contact: David Deegan, 202-564-7839,

With the current outbreak and renewed interest in the West Nile
Virus, there is a valuable source of information available on this
and pesticide related topics: the National Pesticide Information

This resource provides objective, science-based information
about pesticides -- including mosquito repellents and insecticides
that are used in controlling mosquitoes. NPIC, which is funded in
part by EPA, also provides information on federal, state, and local
mosquito control programs.

Additionally, its web site offers a West Nile Virus Resource
Guide with information on the Virus; contacts at local, state and
federal agencies; and maps and statistics.

Visit the National Pesticide Information Center on the Web at or call toll-free at 800-858-7378.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a
comprehensive web site regarding West Nile Virus which provides
many resources including preventive measures to follow and how to
contact local and state authorities at: CDC
also offers a fact sheet on the West Nile Virus in Spanish,
available at:

As a reminder, whenever a person uses a product such as insect
repellents or insecticides, it is important to carefully read and
follow the manufacturer's DIRECTIONS FOR USE, as printed on the
product label. Persons who health-related questions or concerns
about insect repellents or insecticide products used to control
mosquitoes in and around the home should contact NPIC.

For other information about pesticides used to control
mosquitoes, visit the Environmental Protection Agency's website at
/U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/
08/23 09:51

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment for non-profit research and educational purposes only. [Ref.]


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