Clean-Air Changes 'Imperil Parks'

Rules make allow power plants nearby
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted May 16, 2008 4:33 AM CDT
Virginia's Shenandoah National Park. Some conservationists are concerned about new regulations weakening air quality standards at national parks.   (KRT Photos)
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(Newser) – Clean air rules likely to be changed this summer are causing serious concerns about future pollution at some of America's most spectacular national parks, reports the Washington Post. The changes will pave the way for 28 new coal-fired power plants near ten parks, according to a report supported by some National Park Service officials. Parks already have "impaired visibility" because of pollution, and the changes represent a major "setback," said one official.

"There are some days when it's unhealthy to breathe at the park," said a pollution specialist at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. "People come here to get away, and they can't believe that sometimes they're better off where they came from." (Read more air quality stories.)