Air & Waste Management Association (A&WMA)

A&WMA Takes a “Critical” Look at Air Quality Management


A&WMA Takes a “Critical” Look at Air Quality Management During its 100th Annual Conference & Exhibition

John Bachmann, formerly of EPA, to lead a lively exchange on history of air quality management

Pittsburgh, PA – As part of its 100th Annual Conference & Exhibition, the Air & Waste Management Association (A&WMA), will explore the history of the U.S. National Ambient Air Quality Standards and their impact – positive and negative – on environmental progress.

John Bachmann, recently retired from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, will present “Will the Circle Be Unbroken?” The Role of the U.S. National Ambient Air Quality Standards in Air Quality Management,” Wednesday, June 27 at 8 a.m. The eagerly-awaited presentation, which includes a panel critique, audience participation, and even a musical timeline of sorts written by Bachman, promises to be a colorful discussion about air quality management in the United States following passage of the landmark Clean Air Act in 1970.

“Today, we can take pride in the remarkable progress and benefits that have come from the efforts of many in U.S. air quality management,” Bachmann said. “We have found that the estimated benefits of the Clean Air Act substantially exceed compliance costs, and the ratio of benefits to costs has actually increased with time. Yet, the Act – and the state of air quality today – is far from perfect, as implementation has been subject to numerous delays and inefficiencies.”

Bachmann’s presentation examines air quality management over several historical periods, beginning with the advent of air pollution abatement programs in 1907 – the year A&WMA’s predecessor organization was established. Bachmann considers the origin of federal involvement in pollution and smog reduction, and the birth of the abatement approach that is still central to air quality management today. He’ll share insight into the implementation of the first NAAQS, and market-based approaches to pollution control.

Following the presentation, Bachmann’s work will be discussed by a panel of invited guests, including: Howard Feldman, Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs for the American Petroleum Institute, Janice Nolan, Director of National Policy for the American Lung Association, Barry R. Wallerstein, Executive Officer of the South Coast Air Quality Management District, and John G. Watson, Research Professor at the Desert Research Institute, and Chair of the National Academy of Engineering’s Committee on Energy and Air Quality Futures in the U.S. and China. The paper that serves as the basis of Bachmann’s presentation will be published in the June edition of the Journal of the Air & Waste Management Association. In addition, the floor will be open for comments and questions from the audience.

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