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NEWS
September 18, 2011
For too long, smog pollution has left our children gasping for breath ("Breathing uneasily: Obama retreats on tightening smog standards," Sept. 7). Unfortunately, rather than acting decisively to protect our kids' health and despite independent air expert recommendations, President Barack Obama recently announced that he will not update critical smog pollution standards until 2013. Exposure to smog triggers asthma attacks, causes permanent lung damage, and can even lead to premature death.
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NEWS
Timothy B. Wheeler and The Baltimore Sun | September 13, 2014
Looking to protect Marylanders from unsafe levels of smog, environmental regulators are moving to clamp down on pollution from the state's smaller coal-burning power plants, but plant owners warn that the rule could have economic consequences. The Maryland Department of the Environment recently unveiled a draft rule two years in the planning that would require coal-burning plants in the Baltimore and Washington areas to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides by 48 percent over the next four years.
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FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | April 29, 2014
Air quality has improved a lot in Maryland and nationwide over the past 15 years, according to a new report, but summertime smog levels in Harford and Prince George's counties are still among the worst in the country. Despite strides made virtually everywhere in reducing soot or particle pollution, nearly half of all Americans still live in places where smog or soot pollution makes it dangerous to breathe at times, the American Lung Association reported Wednesday in its 15th assessment of the nation's air quality.
NEWS
June 17, 2014
Biking and walking are my favorite ways to travel around Baltimore. To be sure I'll make it to work without stopping to wheeze for air, I subscribe to a daily bulletin for air quality reports. Recently, the air quality indicator has been yellow rather than green, and many Baltimoreans can tell the difference - asthma has kept them home from school or made it difficult to work. With summer beginning, Baltimore's smog will only get worse. Four coal plants near Baltimore release pollution that forms smog and contributes to the asthma attacks and other health impacts Baltimore residents are so familiar with.
NEWS
October 18, 1994
Smog is still polluting our air, harming our lungs and environment, despite nearly a quarter-century of tighter regulations and the expenditure of some $400 billion on controls. Baltimore had 11 unhealthful smog days this summer.One reason is that regulators have largely ignored a key component of smog that comes out of smokestacks and auto tailpipes: Nitrogen oxides.Instead, the air quality battle has focused on cutting emissions of another pollutant -- hydrocarbons, found in paint and unburned gasoline -- because those efforts are easier and cheaper.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | March 5, 1995
For many people, smog causes wheezing, chest pain and lung inflammation at concentrations well below what is now deemed safe, says a new federal report.The finding could mean that people in the Baltimore region breathed unhealthful air as many as 79 days last summer, rather than the 11 reported by the state Department of the Environment.In a review of some 3,000 scientific studies, the Environmental Protection Agency established that repeated or long-term exposure to smog at levels 33 percent below the federal standard can impair breathing and cause potentially harmful changes in the lungs.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | September 27, 1994
Smog-forming pollution from power plants and factories in Maryland and other East Coast states could be slashed by up to two-thirds by 1999 under a plan to be approved today by state air-quality regulators.The plan is the first major effort by the states to curb nitrogen-oxide emissions from smokestack industries, which until now have received little attention in the federally mandated battle against ozone.But critics warn that the reductions planned by the Ozone Transport Commission may not do enough to banish the smog that causes breathing problems in Baltimore and other urban areas in the mid-Atlantic region and the Northeast.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | January 1, 1995
With angry motorists lighting up legislators' switchboards and sounding off on radio talk shows, Maryland's new emissions tests don't have many fans these days.Citizens are indignant about the expense, inconvenience and intrusiveness of the tests, which cost more, take longer and are tougher than the checks done by the state for the past 10 years."Enough is enough," said Robert Cadwalader, a commercial pilot from Linthicum who's worried about strangers handling his minivan. "The quest for 'pure air' is going too far."
NEWS
By Heather Dewar and Heather Dewar,SUN STAFF | June 19, 2001
The air pollution that Marylanders created yesterday will come back to irritate them today, meteorologists said, predicting "code red" smog for the Baltimore area. Ground-level ozone, the main ingredient in smog, is expected to reach levels that can cause breathing problems in children, the elderly, and those with heart or lung problems. People in those high-risk groups should limit time outdoors today, and healthy adults should limit strenuous outdoor work, according to the Maryland Department of the Environment.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | May 24, 1994
The state began issuing daily air-quality forecasts for the Baltimore metropolitan area yesterday and asked the public to cut down on driving and other smog-producing activities this summer.The Department of the Environment, which for years has reported same-day smog readings via telephone hot line, plans to issue the new one-day forecasts throughout the summer.The air quality in the city and suburbs is expected to be good today, no threat to people's breathing or health, state officials said.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | April 29, 2014
Air quality has improved a lot in Maryland and nationwide over the past 15 years, according to a new report, but summertime smog levels in Harford and Prince George's counties are still among the worst in the country. Despite strides made virtually everywhere in reducing soot or particle pollution, nearly half of all Americans still live in places where smog or soot pollution makes it dangerous to breathe at times, the American Lung Association reported Wednesday in its 15th assessment of the nation's air quality.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | March 3, 2014
New federal auto emission and fuel standards announced Monday should help clear Maryland's summer smog and even aid the cleanup of the Chesapeake Bay, according to state environmental officials. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said the "Tier 3" rules it finalized limiting tailpipe emissions and sulfur in gasoline should reduce harmful pollution, prevent thousands of illnesses and premature deaths and improve the mileage of cars and trucks. Robert M. Summers, Maryland's environment secretary, said reducing vehicle emissions should mean healthier air to breathe in the state "for generations to come.
NEWS
August 23, 2012
It's been a crummy summer for breathing in Maryland. August has seen five Code Orange days, where ozone has been so bad that the air poses a health risk for sensitive individuals, including children, the elderly and the infirm. But that's a big improvement over June and July, when Maryland had a total of 17 Code Orange days and four days of Code Red, when people are warned to stay indoors. In June, Maryland experienced its most polluted air in five years. Altogether, there have been 26 days of Code Orange or worse, compared to 24 such days at this point last year.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | July 5, 2012
Summer's off to a smoggy start in Maryland and across the country, it seems. Since the first official day of summer June 20, there have been nine days when ozone pollution made the air unhealthful for at least some Marylanders to breathe, according to Clean Air Partners , which publishes air-quality forecasts.  In that period, the Baltimore metro area has seen six days bad enough to pose problems either for sensitive individuals or everyone....
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | June 29, 2012
With temperatures predicted to top 100 degrees today and stay in the high 90s into next week, air-quality forecasters are warning that smog across much of Maryland likely will reach unhealthful levels for children, older adults and anyone with breathing or heart problems. Smog, or ground-level ozone pollution, is expected to hit "Code Orange" levels through Sunday in the Baltimore metropolitan area, according to Clean Air Partners , which publishes air-quality forecasts prepared for the Maryland Department of the Environment and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | May 2, 2012
Just in time for the start of ozone season, the Environmental Protection Agency officially reminds us that Baltimoreans are still breathing unhealthful levels of pollution in their air in late spring and summer. The city and its suburbs were among 45 metro areas nationwide that EPA listed on Tuesday as being in "nonattainment" with air quality standards set in 2008 for ground-level ozone, or smog. Ozone is the byproduct of chemicals emitted in vehicle exhaust and from a wide variety of other sources, including power plants and factories.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | April 28, 1995
Smog in Central Maryland endangers more than 54,000 asthmatic children, mostly in the suburbs, says a report released yesterday that tallied the number of youngsters living in the nation's smoggiest areas.The American Lung Association said 743,000 children under 14 reside in Maryland's smog corridor -- from the Washington suburbs through the Baltimore metropolitan area into Cecil County -- and even youngsters without asthma face some risk."Children's lungs are not just miniature versions of adult lungs," said Dr. Rebecca Bascom, a pulmonary specialist at the University of Maryland Medical Center.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler and Timothy B. Wheeler,Sun Staff Writer | September 7, 1995
This summer's record-setting heat wave helped produce some of the worst smog the Baltimore area has seen in four years.There have been 14 days this year when ozone, the key ingredient in smog, has reached unhealthful levels in the city or its suburbs.On those days, the Maryland Department of the Environment issued "code red" air quality alerts, urging people with breathing problems to stay indoors and asking the public to limit driving.Last year, the Baltimore area experienced 10 "bad ozone" days, when ground-level ozone concentrations exceeded the federal safety threshold of 120 parts per billion of air. Maryland had 11 such days, the most of any state on the East Coast.
NEWS
September 18, 2011
For too long, smog pollution has left our children gasping for breath ("Breathing uneasily: Obama retreats on tightening smog standards," Sept. 7). Unfortunately, rather than acting decisively to protect our kids' health and despite independent air expert recommendations, President Barack Obama recently announced that he will not update critical smog pollution standards until 2013. Exposure to smog triggers asthma attacks, causes permanent lung damage, and can even lead to premature death.
NEWS
By Rena Steinzor | September 7, 2011
In a decision that outraged public health experts and environmentalists Friday, President Barack Obama announced that he had directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency not to do anything further to lower smog in the air until 2013 - after he has been reelected (or so he hopes). EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson was about to tighten controls, which are at this moment significantly less protective even than what the Bush administration thought acceptable. But President Obama, apparently anxious to placate relentless critics at the American Petroleum Institute and the Chamber of Commerce, told Ms. Jackson to back off. The business groups could hardly contain their glee, disingenuously describing the president's decision as an "enormous victory for America's job creators.
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