Clean Air Act

Clean air, you’d think it would be a no brainer, but it took an act of Congress to make it a law. There are 20 coal power plants in Missouri, and they expose over 4.7 million people within a 30 mile radius, to their exhaust. In Kansas there are eight coal power plants.

It’s been almost 50 years since the Clean Air Act was made into law, and the way the public views clean air has radically changed from then to now. Stephen Steigman hosts this discussion on the changing culture of environmental protection.

Guests:

A nationwide survey of kids in grades six through twelve shows that nearly 1.8 million of them have tried electronic cigarettes, more than double the rate reported the previous year.

The CDC says nearly seven percent of middle and high school students have tried e-cigarettes, and more than two percent are current users. Erika Sward of the American Lung Association says the rapid growth is due in large part to an aggressive marketing campaign.

Three years after taking effect, the Clean Indoor Air Act remains overwhelmingly popular among Kansas voters, according to a statewide public opinion poll. It finds that 78 percent of Kansas voters approve of the law that prohibits smoking in most public places. 

One of the tradeoffs made to get the law passed exempts state-operated casinos from the smoking ban.

Ash Grove Cement Company has agreed to pay a penalty, and invest $30 million in new pollution control technology at its nine manufacturing plants-one of which is in Chanute, Kan. The settlement stems from charges that Ash Grove violated the Clean Air Act.

The consent decree allows the Overland Park-based company to pay a $2.5 million penalty, and install new pollution controls at plants in nine states, without having to admit to violating air quality requirements.

Tyson Foods has agreed to a settlement with the federal government over accidental releases of anhydrous ammonia at its facilities in Kansas and three other states.