This Section performs a wide variety of activities that help support current agency functions and also establish future initiatives. It holds the primary responsibility for the development and periodic revision of the State Implementation Plan (SIP). A State Implementation Plan is a federally enforceable strategy that details how a state plans to attain and maintain compliance with National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) mandated by the Clean Air Act. A SIP consists of a state’s regulations and legal agreements limiting the amount of pollutant discharges to the atmosphere. To insure that these regulations are sufficient to protect human health and welfare, a technical air quality demonstration is often required. Usually this demonstration consists of evaluating monitored air quality data, developing comprehensive source-specific emissions inventories and collecting meteorological data. This information is then used in air dispersion modeling analyzes to determine the ambient concentrations of pollutants. The Planning section is responsible for preparing these demonstrations and developing the policies of DAQ.
Special services (ad hoc) - represents DAQ in various regional air quality initiatives and forums including: the Chesapeake Bay Program, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Air Management Association (MARAMA), the South-Eastern States Air Regulatory Management (SESARM) and Regional Haze Planning Organization, as well as performing regulatory research and development. Transportation Conformity (ensuring that transportation projects do not cause air quality violations) issues are also addressed.
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