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Obtaining and Strengthening National Air Quality Standards

Fine particulate pollution in California's Central Valley. The microscopic size of fine particulate matter, also known as soot or PM2.5, allows it to lodge deep within the lung.

Fine particulate pollution in California's Central Valley. The microscopic size of fine particulate matter, also known as soot or PM2.5, allows it to lodge deep within the lung.

Photo by Chris Jordan-Bloch / Earthjustice

Earthjustice is protecting our right to breathe clean air by making dirty industries clean up their pollution and prevent the harm they cause to nearby communities.

Soot pollution is causing premature death across the nation. Smog is choking our cities and iconic wild places with dangerous brown haze. These and other dangerous pollutants are fueling an epidemic of asthma outbreaks, heart disease and other serious health problems.

Literally thousands upon thousands of dirty facilities across the nation are harming our health in this way. Earthjustice is working to clean up some of the worst individual operations, but this targeted approach also needs backup from a broader strategy.

In 2012, years of Earthjustice litigation secured updated federal rules to control soot pollution, tiny particles that can cause premature death, heart disease, lung damage and potentially cancer. By reducing pollution emitted through tailpipes and smokestacks, these rules could save thousands of lives and billions of dollars every year.

Earthjustice is strengthening national air quality standards by:

  1. Obtaining stronger federal rules to control smog and soot pollution, acid rain, and other pervasive pollution, and defending rules increasing public health protections from industry attacks.
    We are the national leaders in cracking down on pollution coming from coal plants and other polluting facilities that not only wreaks havoc on public health, but also fouls the air in our national parks, forest and wilderness areas.
  2. Obtaining and strengthening national rules that reduce toxic air pollution from dirty industries, including coal-fired power plants, refineries, cement kilns, lead smelters, PVC plants, and incinerators.