Public Clean Air Hearings

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, or TCEQ, held a public hearing on the statewide implementation of the National Clean Air Interstate Rule and the Clean Air Mercury Rule this afternoon in Houston. Houston Public Radio's Rod Rice reports.

It's the last public hearing on the two programs before the state agency adopts standards in July.

"The Clean Air Interstate Rule is for the reduction of nitrous oxides and sulfur dioxide and the Clean Air Mercury Rule is for is to reduce mercury emissions from electric generating utilities.

TCEQ's Kim Herdon says these programs are run by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

"And they'll actually be monitoring to make sure that electric generating units maintain the allowances they were given for pollution."

Herdon says industries taking part in the hearings have generally supported the standards they will have to meet while environmental groups have said the standards are not stringent enough. The standards for nitrous oxide will go into effect in January of 2009 and for sulfur dioxide and mercury a year later.

Bio photo of Rod Rice

Rod Rice

Local Anchor, Morning Edition

Rod Rice became fascinated with radio at an early age, while sitting on his Grandfather’s lap listening to his "programs" on the big Emerson Radio...