Environmental Technology

McEachin Bill Would Provide Tools to Protect Health Through Better Understanding of Local Air Pollution

EDF statement from Sarah Vogel, Senior Vice President, Healthy Communities

July 28, 2022

Lexi Ambrogi, (973) 960-0073, lambrogi@edf.org

(Washington, DC – July 28, 2022) US Representative A. Donald McEachin (VA) today introduced the “Technology Assessment for Air Quality Management Act” to strengthen hyperlocal air quality insights and improve understanding of the health impacts of air pollution.

The bill would require the US Environmental Protection Agency to better enable the development and understanding of air pollution, health and equity insights at the community level. Under this bill, EPA would update the agency’s Air Sensor Toolbox with characterizations of the advantages and limitations of community monitoring technologies such as low-cost monitors and satellite data products, potential uses of the data, and how to access data on potential sources of air pollution and health impacts from air pollution. The bill would also require EPA to better integrate environmental justice mapping tools, focus on cumulative burdens, and improve the quantitative use of low-cost sensors and data from satellites in decision-making.

“Air quality monitoring technologies that reveal community-level insights are critical to inform our understanding of the sources and local health impacts of air pollution—which negatively impacts millions of people in this country every day. Low-income communities and communities of color bear the brunt of harmful air pollution, and the ability to integrate high quality air pollution data into decision-making is crucial.

“We thank Representative McEachin for introducing the ‘Technology Assessment for Air Quality Management Act,’ which would provide communities and governments across the country with the tools to better understand local air pollution sources and protect the health of residents.

“EDF looks forward to continuing to work with Rep. McEachin and the bill’s co-sponsors, the EPA and communities across the country to improve the usability of high quality air pollution data and protect public health.”

The bill is a companion to S. 3507, the “Technology Assessment for Air Quality Management Act,” introduced by Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts.

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