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E-M:/ Detroit Air Toxics Project

MDEQ News Release.....

September 11, 2003

Contacts:  Patricia Spitzley
                 (517) 241-7397

Air Toxics Initiative Slated for Detroit

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded a grant that will allow
the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to perform a risk
assessment of air toxics in the greater Detroit area and fund projects
to reduce these risks.  Air toxics include a large number of air
pollutants that can be harmful to health.

DEQ Air Quality Division Chief, Vinson Hellwig is pleased to see this
project move forward.  "This risk assessment will be a great opportunity
to evaluate the 'big picture' of community exposure to air toxics,"
Chief Hellwig declared.  "We also look forward to working with the
people in the community to identify and fund those projects that will
help reduce their exposure to air contaminates."

Numerous sources contribute to high concentrations of air toxics in
Southeast Michigan and subsequent health risks. This includes emissions
from mobile sources such as cars and trucks, manufacturing, combustion,
and from individual activities.  Detroit is in the top 5% of U.S. cities
with the greatest exposure to toxic air pollutants.

The goal of the risk assessment project is to obtain a better
understanding about the health risks from toxic compounds in urban air
and to identify risk reduction projects.  It has both a 'risk
assessment' and a 'risk reduction' component. The effort will include
the involvement of a community stakeholder group.

Air toxics currently monitored in SE Michigan include benzene,
chloroform, formaldehyde, arsenic, chromium, and other trace metals, and
volatile organic compounds.

The risk assessment will build on monitoring efforts such as the
Detroit Air Toxics Pilot Project where air sampling was conducted at
eight locations to measure outside air quality where people live, work,
and play.

Detailed information on air toxics assessment activities is available
via the Air Quality Division Internet web pages at
http://www.michigan.gov/deq .  Select "AIR" and choose "Air Toxics" from
the left-hand menu.


Alex J. Sagady & Associates        http://www.sagady.com

Environmental Enforcement, Permit/Technical Review, Public Policy,
Evidence Review and Litigation Investigation on Air, Water and
Waste/Community Environmental and Resource Protection
Prospectus at:  http://www.sagady.com/sagady.pdf

PO Box 39,  East Lansing, MI  48826-0039 
(517) 332-6971; (517) 332-8987 (fax); ajs@sagady.com