The change to state water quality standards rules provides greater flexibility in Missouri’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit program.
The state's regulations previously allowed no more than three years for a permittee to come into compliance with its NPDES permit.
The Missouri Department of Natural Resources submitted proposed changes, allowing longer than three years, to EPA in December for review and approval. The decision to approve the changes was recently announced.
Government and civic leaders in southeast Missouri believe reducing ozone levels is largely out of their control because the pollutions drifts in from hundreds of miles away.
A committee of the Southeast Missouri Regional Planning and Economic Development Commission met Friday in Perryville to review data from the Environmental Protection Agency. The committee is fighting to keep the region from being designated a "nonattainment area," with pollution readings that routinely exceed EPA standards.