SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal court has given the Obama administration a deadline for updating federal standards for smog that are more than a year overdue.
U.S. District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers in San Francisco on Tuesday ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to issue ground-level ozone standards by Dec. 1 and a final rule by Oct. 1, 2015.
"EPA will meet the deadlines outlined by the court," Liz Purchia, an agency spokeswoman, said in an emailed statement. "However, the deadlines present a challenge for the agency because there is a significant amount of scientific analysis and review required."
Ozone is the main ingredient in smog, a powerful lung irritant.
At ground-level, ozone is created when emissions from cars and industrial facilities mix with sunlight to create smog.
The court ruling came after environmental groups sued the Obama administration for failing to issue a new standard by March 2013, as required by the federal Clean Air Act.
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