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As the number of vehicles on the nation’s roadways increased, air pollution from mobile sources was identified as an important national health concern. Recognizing this connection, the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAAs) and the Tennessee and Mississippi Transportation Conformity Rules require transportation plans, programs (TIP), and projects to conform to the purpose of the Tennessee and Mississippi State Implementation Plan (SIP). Conformity to a SIP means that planned transportation activities will not produce new air quality violations, worsen existing violations, or delay timely attainment of the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). The Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) and its successor legislations, the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) and Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) reinforce the need for coordinated transportation and air quality planning through the metropolitan planning process.
Currently, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated Memphis, TN-MS-AR as a 2008 8-hour ozone attainment area effective July, 25, 2016. Included in this designation were Shelby County, TN; Crittenden County, AR; and DeSoto County, MS in the Memphis MPO boundary. The Memphis MPO is responsible for demonstrating conformance of the NAAQS for Shelby County, TN and the portion of DeSoto County, MS in the Memphis MPO boundary. For the carbon monoxide (CO), EPA re-designated Shelby County and Memphis as attainment, effective August 31, 1994.
For more information about project related conformity please visit the two links below.