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Attainment Planning for Air Quality Standards

In Colorado, 11 communities once violated the federal standards for fine particles or carbon monoxide. These areas were classified as "nonattainment" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. All these areas have since been redesignated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to "attainment/maintenance" status.


Ozone pollution has re-emerged as a problem for the Front Range area, and in 2007 the area violated the federal 8-hour ozone standard and was designated "nonattainment." For more information see the ozone website.


A nonattainment area must develop an air quality attainment and maintenance plan to demonstrate that it can be redesignated to attainment status. These plans are prepared jointly by local governments, local planning agencies and the Air Division.


The purpose of these plans is to show how attainment and maintenance of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards will be achieved. The plans describe the nature of the air quality problems and the probable causes. They provide projections of future pollutant levels and identify strategies that can be used to provide necessary pollution reductions.


Once prepared, the plans are submitted to the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission for a public hearing and upon approval sent to the legislature and the governor before submittal to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The plans can be viewed at the following site:




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Curt Taipale