Federal and Colorado State Air Quality Actions

The United States Federal Government has been taking action to reduce air pollution and improve air quality since 1955. While regulated at the federal level, it is up to each state to maintain compliance with the Clean Air Act and keep pollutant levels below the national standards. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is responsible for the state’s air quality, but many actors and agencies maintain, monitor, and plan for improving our air. Thus, there is no centralized location of all the actions taken at both the federal and state levels to track policies, bills, regulations, and updates related to air quality and air pollution.

The Institute for Science & Policy recognized this gap and compiled the below timeline of major air quality actions. It begins with the first national Air Pollution Control Act in 1955, through the 2022 reclassification of the Denver Metro and North Front Range area as “severe” nonattainment of the ozone standards, to the start of the EPA update process for ozone standards in August 2023.

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