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Residential Wood-Burning: To Burn or Not to Burn

By Nancy Daher

Wood-burning infographic

Wood-burning infographic. Click to enlarge.

More likely than not, you’ve owned a wood-burning appliance and used it to heat your home during cold, wintry nights. What you might not know, however, is that burning wood emits more pollution in the air than other heating devices. Smoke from residential wood heaters contains toxic pollutants and fine particle pollution, also known as fine particulate matter or the “infamous” PM2.5! Residential wood smoke can increase particle pollution to levels that pose serious concerns to your health as well as the health of your family and neighbors. The Utah Division of Air Quality (DAQ) currently issues a mandatory no-burn action when PM2.5 levels reach unhealthy levels during winter inversions.

This restriction on those cozy wood fires may have impacted your way of living and left you wondering about how much wood-smoke from your fireplace or wood-stove is actually contributing to Utah’s wintertime PM2.5 pollution problem. I know I enjoy a cozy wood fire on occasion with friends and family. You may also be wondering if wood-burners are really that bad? Doesn’t this seem at odds with the renewable and “green” nature of wood?

Well, the answer is not so straightforward. Using a $70,000 appropriation from the 2015 Utah Legislature, scientists at DAQ recently conducted a study to determine the importance of wood-smoke in PM2.5 during Utah’s wintertime air pollution episodes. PM2.5 samples were collected in areas in Northern Utah that are in non-compliance with EPA’s PM2.5 air quality standards, then analyzed for a specific chemical marker from wood-burning. Findings showed that emissions from wood-burning contribute an appreciable amount of pollution during winter inversions in the sampled areas, even during mandatory no-burn periods. Work is also currently ongoing to determine the impact of a wood-stove change-out program on reducing air pollution levels.

So where do we go from here? How can we keep warm while keeping the air clean?

I am not suggesting that you abandon your fireplace or wood-stove…but taking a few steps to reduce the impact of wood-smoke on air quality, especially during inversion episodes, can go a long way to help everyone breathe a little bit easier.

To learn more about this study, please visit our Wood Burn Study webpage for a detailed explanation of study questions, methods, and findings. Check out EPA’s BurnWise program for useful tips on how you can burn wood more efficiently, responsibly, and safely.

I am an environmental scientist at the Utah Division of Air Quality and an adjunct assistant professor in the department of Family and Preventive Medicine at the University of Utah. I received my doctorate degree in environmental engineering from the University of Southern California. This is my first blog entry, and I hope you enjoyed it.

This entry was originally published on April 10th, 2017, updated on April 10th, 2017, and posted in news.

Utah Poison Control Tackles Toxins during 2016 Algal Blooms

By Barbara Crouch, Guest Blogger

DEQ invites guest bloggers to share their thoughts on issues that impact our environment. We appreciate their insights and the opportunity to broaden the conversation with others in the community.

Utah Poison Control Call Center

Utah Poison Control Call Center

Most people think of the Utah Poison Control Center (UPCC) as the go-to resource if their child/grandchild puts something in their mouth that doesn’t belong. The truth is the Poison Control Center is about more than just kids. Poison exposures can happen at any age, and while most poison exposures occur in the home and involve medications and household products, they can occur at any place and any time and may include substances natural to our environment. Last summer, UPCC collaborated with the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), Utah Department of Health (DOH), Utah County Health Department (UCHD) and numerous other state and local entities in response to an unusually large algal bloom that affected Utah Lake and the Jordan River Canal system. UPCC staff — pharmacists, nurses, and physicians who have additional training in toxicology — were available to respond quickly and effectively to public health concerns about possible exposures to the toxins in the algal bloom.

Calls to the UPCC about the bloom were largely about adverse health effects or the potential for adverse health effects. When Utah Lake was closed, UPCC staff  responded to numerous callers concerned about the impacts to human and animal health from exposure to lake water. On the first day alone, staff documented 246 cases in addition to the 126 “routine” Poison Center cases! Throughout the algal bloom season, UPCC staff provided advice and guidance on over 750 cases, largely involving Utah Lake and Jordan River canals, but also including Scofield Reservoir and Payson Lakes.

Harmful algal bloom on Utah Lake

Adverse health effects were documented in approximately one-third of the cases and included gastrointestinal complaints (nausea, vomiting and diarrhea) as well as headaches and skin and eye irritation. Most adverse effects were minor and didn’t require a trip to the doctor. UPCC staff were able to immediately assess the situation, offer first-aid instructions, and provide follow-up to ensure symptoms were resolving. The UPCC helped callers avoid unnecessary trips to the doctor or hospital, saving them time and money.

UPCC was able to respond quickly to the harmful algal blooms because responding to public health emergencies 24-7 is what we do every day. In addition, our ongoing collaboration with DEQ and DOH to coordinate on environmental public-health issues laid the foundation for this collaborative effort. We already had a multi-agency communication plan in place for harmful algal blooms that instructed people to contact UPCC with their concerns about adverse health effects from exposure. The plan also that helped us all speak with a unified voice right from the start.

This partnership also helped us share important information about the bloom’s health impacts with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). DOH made it possible for us to access the CDC’s new One Health Harmful Algal Bloom System, a national database that tracks the effects of harmful algal blooms on human and animal health. We were able to input almost 200 cases into the system, saving DOH a great deal of staff time.

We hope there won’t be any harmful algal blooms this summer, but if there are, UPCC is ready to help. We urge members of the public to call us anytime at 1-800-222-1222 with their questions or concerns, whether it’s about algal blooms or a curious toddler getting into things they shouldn’t.

We are a 24-hour resource for poison information and educational resources and serve the state of Utah with immediate phone support in a poisoning crisis. Our call center at 1-800-222-1222 is staffed by certified, highly educated specialists to help you prevent poisonings and recover from poison-related accidents. Check out our website for more information about our services and resources, including educational materials, poison prevention tips, and toxic (poison) trends in Utah for e-cigarettes, marijuana, opioids, and common poisoning substances.

 I am the executive director of the Utah Poison Control Center. We are a statewide program that is housed in the Department of Pharmacotherapy, College of Pharmacy, University of Utah Health, where I also serve as a faculty member. I was born and raised in Albany, New York, but Utah has been my home for the last 27 years.

This entry was originally published on April 3rd, 2017, updated on April 25th, 2017, and posted in news.

Legislative Session Helps Us All Breathe a Little Easier

By Scott Baird

Summer Ozone

Air Monitoring Center Section manager Bo Call checks DEQ monitoring equipment

The whirlwind of Utah’s 45 day legislative session is over, the dust has settled,  and we at the Department of Environmental Quality want to thank you for helping this session to be a success. The appropriations and legislation approved in this session will ensure that the Department can continue its ongoing work to protect the health, safety, and well-being of the people of Utah.

Appropriations

The governor’s budget included key budget requests for air-monitoring equipment, air-quality research, harmful algal bloom (HAB) response, a water-use study, and a full-time spill coordinator. We are pleased that the legislature approved our base operating budget and several of the Governor’s priority funding requests.

Air-Monitoring Equipment

Funding for new air monitoring topped the list, with $1.4 million appropriated to upgrade and update equipment that was long past its useful life and to meet federal requirements for a new air monitor in Iron County. This year’s appropriation was part of a two-year effort to ensure our air-monitoring system provides citizens with accurate, real-time information about air-quality conditions. Big thanks to all of you who showed your support and reached out to your legislators to help them understand the critical need for the funding. You played an important role in helping us secure the money to upgrade our monitoring system.

Air-Quality Research

We received $200,000 to continue our successful Storage Tank Emissions Pilot Project (STEPP) in the Uinta Basin. The STEPP project uses infrared (IR) cameras to spot leaks in storage tanks at oil and gas operations so operators can fix to the leaky hatches. Identifying and fixing leaks saves product and improves air quality in the Basin.

DEQ scientist holds handful of mud pulled from the American Fork River after the sediment spill.

DEQ’s spill coordinator ensured that the agency responded quickly and efficiently to the Tibble Fork sediment release

Spill Coordinator

As our population grows, oil and chemical spills occur more frequently. The legislature recognized this threat to the state’s water quality and authorized funding for a full-time spill coordinator who can respond to these spills quickly and efficiently.

Legislation

Environmental bills and resolutions this session addressed a wide range of issues, including air quality, water quality, and waste fees.

HB183 Emissions Settlements Amendments

Litigation over Volkswagen’s use of a “defeat device” to cheat on emission tests led to a court settlement that awarded compensation to affected states, including Utah. We received $35 million from the settlement to reduce diesel emissions. This bill set up the legal infrastructure for the state to receive these funds and invest them in ways that directly improve air quality in Utah. Rep. Steve Handy sponsored HCR5, a companion resolution, to support the use of some of these funds to replace dirty-diesel school buses with clean-fuel buses.

HB392 Air Quality Policy Advisory Board

Lawmakers consider numerous air-quality bills each session but aren’t always sure which ones will have the greatest impact on the state’s air-quality problems. The new Air Quality Policy Advisory Board will examine proposed legislation and identify bills that best address air-quality issues. We anticipate that this new board will work in partnership with DEQ and the Air Quality Board to put forward policies that improve Utah’s air quality.

HCR15 Concurrent Resolution on Sustainable Management of Utah’s Water Quality

This resolution reinforces our commitment to use sound science to find solutions to water-quality issues and partner with our stakeholders to solve water-quality problems.

HCR18 Concurrent Resolution Encouraging Utahns to Consider the Smog Rating When Purchasing a Vehicle

You may not know that you can make a real difference in our air quality by buying a car with a good smog rating. This concurrent resolution encourages residents to look for the vehicle’s smog rating on the car window and consider purchasing a vehicle with a smog rating of ‘8” or above. These cleaner vehicles will help reduce driving-related emissions.

HCR26 Concurrent Resolution Urging Restoration of Utah Lake

Harmful algal blooms (HABs) last summer were a stark reminder of the many environmental challenges facing Utah Lake. This resolution urges comprehensive solutions for restoring the lake, ensuring recreational opportunities, and improving use of the lake for Utah citizens.

Harmful algal bloom on Utah Lake

SB197 Refinery Sales and Use Tax Exemption Amendments

This legislation offers refineries a $1.8 million sales-tax exemption on the purchase of equipment to produce low-sulfur Tier-3 fuels. Use of Tier 3 fuels will help reduce emissions and improve Utah’s air quality.

HB115 Solid Waste Revisions

This bill requires a change to the solid waste disposal fee structure by 2018. We’ll be reaching out to stakeholders for input and ideas on appropriate methods for assessing waste fees.

We are continually encouraged by the high level of public involvement and support for clean air, land, and water and its growing importance for people across the state. It is clear that what happens during the legislative session doesn’t just impact our agency, but all of us — in the air we breathe, the water we drink, the places we recreate, the land we use for our homes and businesses, and the economy that supports our state.

We will continue to work hard to safeguard and improve our air, land, and water for all Utahns and seek your input and participation as we move forward.  Please participate with us and share your questions, concerns, or ideas.

Check out our bill tracking webpage for a look at the environmental legislation introduced during the 2017 legislative session. Visit the Utah Legislature website for a complete list of the bills that were passed, their effective date, and the Governor’s action (signed or not). We hope to see you on Capitol Hill during monthly interim sessions and the 2018 legislative session. Your voice matters!

As the Deputy Director over Policy, Planning and Operational Improvement, I enjoy working with legislators, stakeholders and our employees in finding ways to improve how we do our work. Prior to joining DEQ, I worked in the Governor’s Offices in Utah and Washington and with Deloitte Consulting in D.C., where I helped state and federal agencies identify and implement opportunities to improve. I earned my Bachelor’s Degree at Brigham Young University and my Masters in Public Administration (MPA) and JD degrees from Syracuse University. I LOVE to get outdoors and enjoy SKIING, running, hiking, backpacking, camping, working in the yard, fixing up our broken-down house, and anything else I can convince my wife and four daughters to do with me…oh yeah, and I really like ice cream!

 

This entry was originally published on March 27th, 2017, updated on March 27th, 2017, and posted in news.

Water, Water, Everywhere: Is Your Drinking Water Safe after a Flood?

Over the past month, snowpack runoff, wet weather, and warm conditions have led to major flooding in northern Utah. When the Bear River crested in mid-February 2017, Garland City, Tremonton, Bothwell, Thatcher, East Garland Park, Riverside, Fielding, Plymouth, Corinne, Deweyville, Portage, and areas below the Cutler dam were hit with area-wide flooding. Roads and railroad crossings were washed out, floodwaters poured into yards and basements, and residents piled up sandbags to keep the water at bay.

The safety of our drinking water is often one of our first concerns after a flood. Fortunately, northern Utah’s public water systems didn’t experience water contamination from the flooding. This is due in large part to ongoing, behind-the-scenes efforts by the water systems and the Division of Drinking Water (DDW) to ensure that residents have a safe and adequate supply of drinking water.

DDW sets up periodic site inspections to ensure that public water systems follow drinking-water rules and regulations. During inspections, water operators look for areas where contamination could enter the system. Public water systems are also required to pull routine samples from areas that represent the entire water system. Finally, these systems are pressurized so the possibility of contamination is minimal.

Click on infographic for larger view

Most of the public water systems also chlorinate their water. The systems that do chlorinate provide an added layer of protection to their water. Chlorine is fed at rates that leave a chlorine residual. The residuals are there to attack contamination that gets into the water system. Operators that work for systems that chlorinate can do a rapid test that lets them know if there is residual. Absence of or low residuals would indicate there could be a problem, and the operator would begin pulling samples to test for bacteria. This continuous monitoring for contaminants ensures the safety of the drinking water. If something were to happen, residents would be notified immediately about the steps they should take, such as boiling their water, until samples are clean.

While residents connected to a public water system don’t need to worry about the safety of their drinking water, homeowners with private wells may. Flooding can compromise the quality and safety of the drinking water if contaminated floodwater enters the vent in the well casing and goes down into the well. The Bear River Health Department is offering free sampling to homeowners with private wells and urging well owners to have their water tested. If the samples show positive for bacteriological contamination, the health department can provide guidance on disinfection procedures. The health department also recommends that homeowners hire pump or well contractors to disinfect drilled, driven, or bored wells that may have been contaminated by floodwaters.

Overflowing septic tanks and sewer systems are another area of concern. Residents with septic tanks should monitor the situation and consider the possibility of private well contamination from septic or sewer systems. The Bear River Health Department advises homeowners with septic systems or flooding near their wells to refrain from drinking well water until it has been tested.

In addition to our ongoing efforts to ensure safe drinking water at the affected public water systems, we have been involved in sending out requests for pumps to help pump out vaults and flooded utilities. A tweet was sent out with the help of the Utah Water and Wastewater Response Network (WARN) to member agencies requesting pumps. Circuit Riders from the Rural Water Association of Utah were deployed to the flooded areas to provide onsite assistance and continue to keep DDW briefed on the situation. The Division is communicating with the health departments and offering technical assistance and resources to the affected systems. We’re also working with the Division of Emergency Management to assist with any technical needs that may arise.

Our main goal is the safety of your water and ensuring you have a good supply of it. We will continue to do all we can to work with the various agencies and offer any assistance, both during spring flooding and any other emergency situations, to keep your drinking water clean and safe.

Want to know more? The Bear River Health Department has prepared a series of fact sheets for residents affected by the recent flooding, including instructions for cleaning indoor sewage contamination, what to do with your septic system after a flood, and how to disinfect your well and test your well water. To learn more about how the Division of Drinking Water works to protect the safety of your drinking water every day, visit our webpage.

I am the Field Services Manager for the Division of Drinking Water. I have been in the water industry for 32 years. I am adjunct faculty at Utah Valley University and have taught several courses on subjects relating to water.

This entry was originally published on March 20th, 2017 and posted in news.

Drinking Water Is a Lifelong Passion for DEQ’s Marie Owens

By DEQ Communications Office

Marie Owens is the new director of the Division of Drinking Water at the Utah Department of Environmental Quality. She brings great experience and enthusiasm to DEQ, along with a commitment to continue the legacy of collaboration between regulators, water professionals, and the public to ensure safe and reliable drinking water throughout Utah. We sat down with her for an interview last week.

Marie Owen at the Jordan River Water Conservancy District Conservation Gardens. The Conservancy District's drinking water treatment plant ensures residents receive safe drinking water.
How did you become interested in engineering?

I was good at math and science in high school, so a teacher encouraged me to pursue engineering. Utah State University (USU) has a great STEM (scientific, technology, engineering, and mathematics) program, so I enrolled there. When I took the engineering aptitude test, I bombed it. The counselors at Utah State gently suggested that I consider going into something other than engineering. My response? “I AM going into engineering.” It was the driver I needed. Just because I didn’t know the information at first didn’t mean I couldn’t — or wouldn’t — learn it. Not only did I learn it, but I learned to love it.

Tell us a little more about college.

My first major at Utah State was electrical engineering, but I found studying the movement of tiny electrons too abstract, so I checked into the then-brand-new discipline, environmental engineering. In fact, there were only three or four environmental engineering programs in the country at that time, and USU had just finished going through the accreditation process. As an environmental engineering student, I studied air quality, water quality, wastewater, hazardous waste, and natural systems. Wastewater and drinking water were paired together, which may seem counterintuitive at DEQ, but it’s all about “water in, water out,” and both types of water are treated. I soon discovered I was passionate about protecting drinking water, so that became my focus.

Marie Owens in protective gear to check out a drinking water system.

Just another typical day at Metro.

What did you do after you graduated?

After I graduated from Utah State, I started what was supposed to be a three-year position with the Metropolitan Water District of Sandy to collect water data. A 1996 Environmental Protection Agency rule called the Information Collection Rule required water systems to collect, analyze and submit data for EPA to use in developing rules for the next decade. Water systems collect this much data all the time now, but it was a very large undertaking back in the day, and I was hired to specifically handle this requirement for the three-year mandate. Three years eventually turned into ten!

You mentioned that you had a great mentor at Metro. What did you learn from him?

Yes, I had the good fortune to work with John Carman, who took the time to teach me about what it meant to be steward of public health. Carman valued the individual and taught me that everyone who works at a public water system, from the janitor to the general manager, has a critical role in ensuring our drinking water is clean and safe. Everybody contributes to the end product, and all of us are necessary.

What was it like being a woman during a time when engineering was a predominantly male profession?

Again, I have to give Carman a lot of credit for making my introduction into the world of drinking water a positive experience. He didn’t hire me because I was a woman, but he didn’t shy away from it either. I never felt like my gender opened — or closed — any doors for me. There were of course times when I would get asked for my opinion just to have a “woman’s perspective”, which is patronizing. But overall, I have had a wonderful career full of amazing people who just want to do the right thing for drinking water.

You’ve been in the public sector your entire career. What have you observed about the people who choose to work in the public rather than the private sector?

I’m pretty much ready to try anything, including water tunnels

People don’t go into public service for the prestige, they do it because they can and want to do something that makes a difference. I believe it’s important that our Division of Drinking Water (DDW) staff feel valued for all the great work they’re doing. Utah has over 1000 drinking-water systems, and DDW supports them all so every resident can count on safe, clean drinking water when they turn on their tap. The folks here at DDW pay constant attention to our drinking water so residents have the privilege of forgetting about it.

Tell us a little about “Utah Women of Water,” the organization you helped get started.

I had had several conversations over the years about creating a forum for women with careers in the water industry to learn from and support each other. Christina Osborn, the current president, got it off the ground four years ago, but I’ve been involved from the beginning. Our mission is “Engage, Empower, and Educate.” I think it’s really important for women to network with their peers, meet other women who can serve as mentors, and exchange ideas and information about this fast-changing industry. Our current membership includes scientists, technicians, teachers, engineers, and students. I enjoy mentoring, and Women of Water gives me the opportunity to share my knowledge and experience with other women in the field. Each of us can bring new perspectives to the industry.

 Anything else you’d like to add?

I absolutely love Utah! Our urban, rural, and agricultural communities, coupled with our amazing recreational opportunities, make this a terrific place to live. I grew up in Tremonton on a dry farm — meaning no irrigation, so I learned about the importance of water from a young age. I have a passion for drinking water. I’m proud of all the people at DDW who put in so much effort to ensure that people always have safe water to drink. We are committed to protecting the drinking water throughout the state of Utah, and I am excited to be part of this great team. Utah Rocks!

If you want to learn more about all the great things happening in the Division of Drinking Water, check out our webpage or our annual Open Line newsletter filled with need-to-know information about all things Division of Drinking Water.

I was born and raised in Tremonton, Utah into a family of eight. My father was a wheat farmer, and I grew up wild and free in the dirt and have maintained that sense of adventure ever since. I love exploring the back country of this beautiful state as well as the cultural richness throughout the country. A rainy day on the farm meant that no one could work, so I soon developed a love storms. There is nothing more beautiful to me than storm clouds against Utah’s mountains or red rock.

 I was valedictorian of my graduating class at Bear River High School and attended Utah State University where I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Engineering. During that time, I worked at the Water Research Laboratory in Logan, which led to an internship with the Metropolitan Water District of Salt Lake and Sandy, which led to an offer to work full-time for Metro as a Process Engineer. I worked on the Information Collection Rule, a Solids Residual Management Study, pilot testing and design of the Point of the Mountain Water Treatment Plant, source water protection, and the Salt Lake Aqueduct Title Transfer. From there, I moved to Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District as their Water Quality Division Manager. At Jordan Valley, I continued to add to my surface water treatment skills with distribution, groundwater, and laboratory analysis while continuing to actively work on source protection and collaboration groups. It was at Jordan Valley that realized how much I love working with people and mentoring new professionals.

 Somewhere along the way I managed to find a wonderful husband who has been willing to put up with my quirkiness and we have four amazing kids. They are what I am really proud of in my life, and they keep me grounded and humble. They are also my adventure buddies.

 I am so excited to take on the role Director for the Division of Drinking Water. I truly believe that the drinking water industry is filled with passionate people who care about doing the right thing for the right reason. I love everything about water and love interacting with the people who share my passion.  

 

This entry was originally published on March 13th, 2017, updated on March 13th, 2017, and posted in news.

DEQ: Getting Serious about Improving Utah’s Air

By Donna Kemp Spangler

The Utah Department of Environmental Quality is getting serious about improving Utah’s air quality by 2019.

Don’t get me wrong, DEQ’s Division of Air Quality (DAQ) has always been serious about improving air quality. Specifically, DAQ works to find reasonable and measurable solutions to bring Utah’s “nonattainment” areas of the state into compliance with federal health standards for fine particulate pollution, known as PM2.5—the primary pollutant that shrouds us during winter inversions and causes serious health problems. Scientists have been working on this issue since 2006 when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) lowered the allowable daily average of fine particles from 65 micrograms per cubic meter of air to 35. In 2009, EPA declared parts of Utah—Salt Lake, Provo and Logan—as not meeting the standard. Scientists began work on an air-quality plan known as the “State Implementation Plan.”

The first step was to look at where the pollution is coming from along the Wasatch Front during the winter. DAQ concluded the following from its latest 2014 inventory of sources in Utah, Salt Lake, Davis, and Weber counties: 48 percent vehicles; 13 percent industry; and 39 percent “area sources” like home heating, cooking, paint solvents, etc. (Scientists are now updating the inventory of pollution sources contributing to winter pollution to include the nonattainment areas of Tooele, Cache and Box Elder counties.) That plan called on industry to install cleaner equipment and also included passage of 30-some rules aimed at emission reductions for area sources. As an example, one of those regulations requires that consumer products sold in Utah be formulated to reduce air-polluting components. This step will remove 2,000 tons of pollutants from our air annually.

Yet it’s not enough. Scientists knew it wouldn’t be enough to meet the federal health standard as required by 2015. EPA is now proposing to classify those areas along the Wasatch Front, Tooele, Box Elder and Cache counties as in “serious” nonattainment. That means air-quality scientists are rolling up their sleeves to find additional ways to meet the PM2.5 standard by 2019. We have to submit the plan to EPA by December 31, 2017. And we aren’t waiting around for EPA to tell us that. Technically, EPA hasn’t acted on its “serious” mandate.

Given the seriousness of this, we are not wasting time. DAQ has identified 30 businesses that would potentially fall under a “major source” of pollution, emitting annually 70 tons or more of PM2.5 or precursor pollutant like volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Some of those businesses have resubmitted permits that reduce their emissions below that threshold. Others are looking at the feasibility of installing cleaner equipment to reduce emissions.

In the meantime, DEQ wants to hear from the public. What actions have you seen or thought of that EPA would consider? EPA will only consider proposed actions in a SIP if the actions are “permanent,” “quantifiable,” and “enforceable.” That means voluntary strategies that are difficult to enforce would not be acceptable to EPA.

The Communications Office has created a Facebook group, “Air 2019: Utah Air Quality Discussion Group” to facilitate a community dialogue. This is a place where community members can ask questions, suggest ideas, and share information about improving Utah’s air. Join the group to stay up-to-date on the latest news and provide input in the rulemaking and planning process. After all, we all want clean air.

Donna SpanglerI am the Communications Director for DEQ and a former reporter for the Deseret News. I write a monthly blog post. You can read my previous blog posts at deq.utah.gov/news. You can follow me on Twitter @deqdonna

This entry was originally published on March 6th, 2017, updated on April 14th, 2017, and posted in news.