Regulatory Policy and Organizations

Partisan politics on air pollution are helping to make L.A. smoggy again

Partisan politics on air pollution are helping to make L.A. smoggy again

Last Friday was a bad day for clean air. First, the board of the South Coast Air Quality Management District voted to fire its longtime executive officer. Then, it reconfirmed its support for a plan to let oil refiners, power plants and other major polluters keep spewing emissions.

The two votes weren't exactly a surprise. The AQMD, which regulates air quality for 17 million people here in the nation's smoggiest region, is governed by a 13-member board comprised of elected officials and appointees from Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. New appointees to the board — whose arrival in February gave Republicans a majority on the panel — had...

31°