On April 15, 2004, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated the counties of Anderson, Blount, Jefferson, Knox, Loudon, Sevier, and a portion of Cocke within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in “basic” non-attainment of the 8-hour standard for ground level ozone. There area must meet air quality standards for ozone by June 2009. On December 17, 2004 , EPA designated Anderson , Blount, Knox, Loudon, and a portion of Roane County in non-attainment of the fine particulate matter (PM 2.5) standard. The area must meet air quality standards for PM 2.5 by April 2010.
A large portion of the Non-Attainment Area is outside of the currently designated TPO Planning Area. As a result of these designations, the TPO has entered an agreement with the Tennessee Department of Transportation to conduct long range transportation planning and transportation conformity for the entire non-attainment area through 2013. In conducting regional transportation planning, the TPO must develop and update a Long Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program for the entire area showing that the projects proposed in non-attainment counties will not result in additional emissions that will worsen air quality.
The most current Air Quality Conformity Determination covers the updated 2011-2014 Transportation Improvement Program and Amendments to the 2009-2034 Knoxville Regional Mobility Plan. The Air Quality Conformity Determination was adopted by the TPO Executive Board on September 22, 2010 and approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation on November 5, 2010. More information on regional air quality can be found on the Regional Clean Air Coalition website.
Air Quality Conformity Determination
Knoxville Ozone Non-Attainment Area
Knoxville PM 2.5 Non-Attainment Area