air pollution

creative commons

A measure to tighten up environmental regulations on large chicken operations has been introduced in the Maryland General Assembly.

State Senator Richard Madaleno (D) has authored a bill that would require the Maryland Department of the Environment to identify and monitor all air pollution emitted from these facilities.

They’re known as Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations or CAFO’s.

And, they have stirred up strong opposition on the Eastern Shore where longtime residents have complained about the new facilities that have arrived in their backyard.

Angela Byrd

FROSTBURG, Md. (AP) - Researchers with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science have found a surprising explanation for the improved water quality in the Chesapeake Bay: cleaner air.

Professor Keith Eshleman (ESH'-el-men) in the center's Frostburg office said in a statement Tuesday that his team found nearly universal improvement in water quality since 1986 across the Upper Potomac River Basin. The area includes parts of Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.

Environmental Integrity Project

BALTIMORE (AP) - A Maryland agency says a permit has expired to build what clean air advocates say would be the largest trash burning incinerator in the country.

The Maryland Department of the Environment found Thursday that the permit for the waste-to-energy plant proposed for Baltimore expired when construction stopped in October 2013.

The project was being developed by New York-based Energy Answers.


Demonstrators took to the streets in Middletown to protest the proposed natural gas power plant that would generate electricity for the 228-thousand square-foot Middletown Technology Center.

Some carried red and white signs that that read residents against the power plant.

Don Nardy, an electrical engineer and local resident, told the Wilmington News Journal that it sounded like the power plant was designed to sell electricity.

He also feared it would cause air pollution in a highly populated area.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Supreme Court has rejected a challenge by environmentalists to an order from Delaware's former environmental secretary granting an air quality permit for a crude oil transfer station at the Delaware City oil refinery.
The court rejected the appeal Thursday, one day after hearing oral arguments.

Don Rush

A Code Orange alert has been issued for today by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

It will affect the corridor up along I-95 in the northern part of the state.

That means the air has become too unhealthy for those with asthma, heart and lung disease as well as for children.

On Saturday the air pollution is expected to moderate.  

By Sunday a cold front is forecast.

PBF Eneregy

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A state panel is set to hear a high-stakes appeal by environmentalists of an air pollution permit issued to PBF Energy's Delaware City oil refinery.

The permit granted by Delaware's environmental secretary in May involves the loading of crude oil onto barges for shipment to another PBF refinery in Paulsboro, N.J. 

That operation is part of a larger transfer operation in which PBF brings crude oil by rail from various sources, including tar sands oil from Canada, to a new rail loop near Delaware City that can accommodate hundreds of tanker cars each week.

Dover will be getting a 309 megawatt natural gas power plant.

Calpine is expected to invest $300 million into the project and the project is estimated to bring in some $2.3 million to the local governments.

New plant is expected produced hundreds of job clean energy and cut customer jobs.

Governor Jack Markell called the plant a critical component for the First State’s effort to slash air pollution noting that emissions have declined over the last four years.

PBF Energy

The Environmental Integrity Project charged yesterday that Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control violated the federal Clean Air Act.

The Washington based environmental group says the blanket emissions permit the state agency gave to PBF Energy for the Delaware City Refinery freed the company to modify some existing systems without triggering stepped-up control requirements for nitrogen oxides.

NRG Energy

DOVER (AP) - A small-scale study of people living near the NRG Energy powe4r plant near Millsboro suggests that th plant is not a major source of particular air pollution for area residents.

The student released Tuesday instead suggests that the greatest risk of air pollution comes from upwind areas in other states in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, and from indoor sources, such as tobacco smoke and cleaning products, within residents' own homes.

The study of 35 area residents noted that most of them spend more than 80 percent of their day in their own homes. 

American Lung Association website

Dover is the most soot-free capitals in the nation.

That’s from the American Lung Association, which said that smog forming ozone and soot levels between 2009 and 2011 were the lowest ever for the state of Delaware and showed progress for cities and counties across the country.

The Association found that both Kent and Sussex Counties received “A” grades for average concentrations of small airborne particles but New Castle and Sussex Counties both received a grade of F for ozone levels.

Kent County improved but only got a marginally passing grade of D.

NEWARK, Del. (AP) - State environmental officials are joining with the city of Newark to kick off a campaign asking motorists to help reduce air pollution.

Wednesday's event at Newark High School highlights a Newark ordinance aimed at getting drivers to turn off car engines rather than letting them idle for long periods.

The ordinance prohibits idling an engine for more than five consecutive minutes in a 60-minute period. A first offense results in a warning, with a $100 fine for subsequent offenses.

BALTIMORE (AP) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says releases of toxic air pollutants were down in 2011 in the Mid-Atlantic region.

And the federal agency says cleaner power plants are part of the reason.

The EPA says releases were down 13.8 percent in 2011 in Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia compared to 2010. Nationwide, total toxic air releases dropped 8 percent from 2010.


BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland is not meeting federal ozone standards and isn't likely to do so without federal policies to address pollution blowing in from other states.

That's the word from a new clean-air report issued Monday by the Maryland Department of the Environment.