Feb 20, 2024

EPA Issues Regulation Strengthening Air Quality Standards for PM 2.5

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule to strengthen the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for fine particulate matter (PM2.5). The current standard, which has been in place for more than a decade, limits the average annual amount of fine particle pollution to 12 micrograms per cubic meter of air. The EPA will now require a 25% reduction in the allowable PM 2.5 to 9.0 micrograms per cubic meter but will retain the previous standards for all other PM standards.

The tougher standard on particulate matter, often referred to as the "soot rule," will be fully implemented by 2032. The EPA maintains that the reduced PM 2.5 standard will result in $46 billion in public health benefits.  The EPA's new rule will trigger the following actions to implement the revised PM2.5 NAAQS:

For more information on particle pollution and to read the final rule, visit epa.gov/pm-pollution