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Portland, Maine, to Get Cleaner Air

The Portland, Maine, area has repeatedly violated clean air standards for ozone, a severe lung irritant linked to increased chest pain, asthma attacks, and emergency room visits. When the EPA failed to enforce the standards, the Sierra Club, represented by Earthjustice, filed suit in federal district court in Washington, DC.

On April 28, 2004, a settlement requiring stronger anti-smog measures in the Portland area was reached. This settlement provides for new limits on pollution from industrial facilities and fumes from paints and consumer products. It also strengthens Maine's commitment to require the sale of low-emission vehicles that meet the same standards as required in California. The settlement is expected to produce significant clean air benefits by curbing smog-generating emissions in the Portland area.