Maryland asks EPA to step in to reduce smog

BALTIMORE (AP) — Maryland officials are seeking federal help in reducing the pollution that blows in from the Midwest.

The Baltimore Sun reports state environmental regulators filed a petition Wednesday asking the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to crack down on 19 coal plants in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia whose emissions they say make Maryland’s air unhealthy to breathe on hot summer days.

The plants have spent billions of dollars on technologies to reduce pollution, but state environment secretary Ben Grumbles says they’re not using them every day during the summer, when the heat and sunshine cause the pollutant ozone to form and make air quality its worst.

Officials estimate that 70 percent of Maryland’s ozone pollution comes from upwind states.

Maryland is asking the EPA to act before

this summer.