Helena -- Governor Steve Bullock is requesting EPA to remove the designation of nonattainment with air quality standards that was placed on the Billings area in 2013. The Billings area met, and continues to meet, the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for sulfur dioxide (SO2).
Governor Bullock said, “We have worked with the EPA to meet the sulfur dioxide standards under the Clean Air Act. By demonstrating our success we hope to prevent burdensome regulations being placed on Montana and the Billings area.”
After the standards were revised in 2013, Montana recommended that all 56 counties, including Yellowstone County, be designated as either in attainment or unclassifiable for the revised pollutant standard. Shortly after this recommendation, EPA notified Montana that it disagreed with the designations and preferred to designate all of Yellowstone County as being in nonattainment.
In 2013, Governor Bullock responded to EPA by submitting data for Yellowstone County to support a change in the designation. Despite the request, a portion of Yellowstone County near the City of Billings was designated as in nonattainment by the EPA.