- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 9, 2015

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The Sierra Club is asking a federal judge to set a deadline for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to issue a final plan on regional haze in Arkansas.

The environmental organization’s Tuesday motion for summary judgment contends that the EPA still hasn’t issued a final plan for Arkansas to address haze requirements that’s a part of the 1999 Clean Air Act. That law aims to improve visibility at certain national wilderness areas by targeting sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions from industrial facilities, which are often coal-fired power plants, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (https://bit.ly/1XLit0Y ) reported.

The state of Arkansas was granted intervention in the lawsuit last month and asked U.S. District Judge Leon Holmes last week to dismiss the suit.

Arkansas is charged with implementing measures to improve visibility at two state sites. The EPA partially rejected the state’s proposal for implementing the Regional Haze Rule in 2012. The state never resubmitted that plan and the EPA didn’t submit a federal plan, prompting the 2014 lawsuit, which seeks the court to compel the EPA to enact a federal implementation plan for Arkansas.

EPA officials originally said they would issue a final federal implementation plan by Dec. 15, but pushed the deadline back to accommodate for negotiations on a new state plan with the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality.

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Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, https://www.arkansasonline.com

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