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Re: E-M:/ Michigan Ozone Action Daze

Enviro-Mich message from "Alex J. Sagady & Associates" <ajs@sagady.com>

Actually, the MDEQ ozone web site is exemplary in providing
near real time ozone data, and it does also provide the 
pollution standards index.   Despite some occasional glitches,
I think it is the absolute best state ozone data site in the US
by far (this is a tribute to hard workers in the MDEQ Air Monitoring Unit).

My problem is with MDEQ's communication and PR strategy
that focuses exclusively on "Ozone Action Days" and the 
inadequate message to the public that is given.

First, the prediction of an ozone action day is based primarily 
on weather conditions and serves well as a predictive request to the 
public to try to limit emissions.   However, these messages are
concentrated exclusively in the general Grand Rapids, Holland
Muskegon and Southeast Michigan Metro areas.   No public
message concerning the need to reduce emissions really 
goes to other affected areas.

Second, the public never is told in a consistent set of MDEQ
press statements of the near real time occurrance of hazardous
air....the only place this happens is on the web site.    ....and
little or no public education occurs in outlying/downwind
areas with some of the worst problems.    There is no 
near real time dissemination of pollutant standards index
information through MDEQ press outlets to electronic media
that would warn the public that affected individual should
take action to reduce their exposure to ozone.

Quite frankly, the second problem is a result of the Engler
Administration's conflicting interest with their advocacy 
efforts against EPA's air quality standards and the Engler
penchant for portraying Michigan's air as clean when, in 
fact, it is both dirty and a health hazard.   There may also
be interdepartmental issues associated with MDEQ 
issuing a health hazard warning when the Michigan 
Department of Community Health views such activity
as being on their turf.  

Third, any health hazard message content of ozone 
action days is far secondary to other mixed messages
attempting to portray the need for citizens to control 
pollution as an effort to avoid more stringent regulation
(this latter point is an illustration about how the industrial
perspective has "polluted" the ozone action day activity.).

Never mind that we would have fewer problems if
the state of Michigan actually complied with the requirements
of the Clean Air Act to have imposed reasonable controls
before getting bogus attainment redesignations (i.e. controls
on emissions from gasoline marketing, an auto inspection and
maintenance program that actually was effective as 
is used in other states, better controls on industrial point
sources, including controls in counties outside of major
metropolitan areas, etc).

At 01:58 PM 6/25/1999 EDT, you wrote:
>Enviro-Mich message from RobC313@aol.com
>About the MDEQ ozone web sight,. It seems as though the Ozone Frames and 
>entire site is well designed and presented in a good graphic format.  I am 
>glad the state has made this effort but I wonder if by attempting to make it 
>"pretty" and user friendly we ( the state) is failing to provide we ( the 
>people) the information most needed. That being ozone day predictions and 
>real time ozone readings.
>OK maybe I have been spoiled by the electronic age of instant information.  
>How do you  rate the system and its effectiveness? Does anybody out there 
>share my views and more importantly are there any suggestions as to whether 
>we should be grateful and patient, or make some requests (demands?)  of the 
>MDEQ webmaster. 
>And please understand this is not a criticism of the webmaster who may be 
>doing a great job but under difficult circumstances. Let me know-  rob
>ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
>and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at
>Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
>majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"
Alex J. Sagady & Associates        Email:  ajs@sagady.com

Environmental Enforcement, Technical Review, Public Policy and
Communications on Air, Water and Waste Issues
and Community Environmental Protection

PO Box 39  East Lansing, MI  48826-0039  
(517) 332-6971 (voice); (517) 332-8987 (fax)

ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"