Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

 NEW! EPA Announces Public Hearing on Proposal to Cut Methane and Other Pollution from the Oil and Natural Gas Industry

Register Here

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold a virtual public hearing on the Agency’s proposed comprehensive new protections to sharply reduce pollution from the oil and natural gas industry – including, for the first time, methane reductions from existing sources nationwide. The proposed new Clean Air Act rule would lead to significant, cost-effective reductions in methane emissions and other health-harming air pollutants that endanger nearby communities.

Hearing information:

  • November 30, 2021 – 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern time.
  • December 1, 20201 – 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Eastern time.


NEW! On June 10, 2021, the EPA Administrator announced his decision to reconsider the December 2020 final decision to retain the particulate matter (PM) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). The EPA released a draft Policy Assessment on October 8th. The Policy Assessment presents a staff analysis of the scientific evidence and technical information, along with preliminary conclusions on the current PM standards, for consideration by the Administrator prior to rulemaking. This follows the September 30th release of the draft Supplement to the Integrated Science Assessment. The draft Policy Assessment presents preliminary conclusions regarding the 24-hour and annual primary PM2.5 standards, the primary 24-hour PM10 standard, and the secondary 24-hour and annual PM2.5 and 24-hour PM10 standards. The public meeting for the panel to review the documents will be held on November 17, 18, and 19 and December 1 and 2, 2021. More detail about how to obtain information about these meetings is available here.


Don’t forget to fill out NTAA’s Air Quality Baseline Needs Assessment for Tribes by December 31, 2021! The purpose of the survey is to collect information from all 574 federally recognized Tribes to enable NTAA to comprehensively describe Tribal ambient and indoor air quality needs. This information will then be used to identify the range of Tribal air quality needs and priorities and build Tribal air quality management capacity. Your participation in this survey is voluntary and you are free to decline to answer any question you do not wish to answer. The survey will take between 15 – 20 minutes to complete. If you would like to take the survey by phone, please email Sydney Janssen at sjanssen@thhnw.org to set up a time, or call 800-717-2118, Ext. 105. If you would like to familiarize yourself with air quality funding sources and concepts mentioned in the survey, please review the glossary PDF. The deadline extended to Friday, December 31, at 5:00pm PST.

TO BEGIN THE SURVEY, CLICK HERE(If the link does not automatically open, please cut and paste this link into your browser:  


For a Microsoft Word version of the survey, click here. Upon completing the survey, ‘save as’ and change the document name as *YOUR_NAME_BNA* and email it to: sjanssen@thhnw.org. If you have any question or difficulty completing this form, please email Sydney.


Applications for EPA’s Clean Air Excellence Awards are Now Being Accepted!

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is now accepting applications for the 2022 Clean Air Excellence Awards Program. Through this program, EPA recognizes and honors individuals and organizations whose efforts have helped to make progress in achieving cleaner air. The award recipients are selected for developing innovative, replicable, and sustainable programs; serving as pioneers in their fields; and improving air quality either directly or indirectly through reduced emissions of criteria pollutants, hazardous air pollutants, and/or greenhouse gases.

The five award categories are:

  1. Clean Air Technology
  2. Community Action
  3. Education/Outreach
  4. State/Tribal/Local Air Quality Policy Innovations
  5. Transportation Efficiency Innovations.

The award application and more information are available here. Applications must be emailed or postmarked by Tuesday, November 30, 2021. Applicants are strongly encouraged to send their entries electronically to OAR_Clean_Air_Excellence_Awards@epa.gov.


EPA’s Community and Tribal Programs Group has been working on a webpage with publicly-facing Tribal Actions and Events calendar

This calendar includes the following information:

  • Upcoming outreach activities (e.g., rulemaking webinars, trainings)
  • National Tribal Council (NTC) monthly meetings,
  • National Tribal Air Association (NTAA) meetings,
  • Regional Tribal Operations Committee (RTOC) meetings, and
  • Upcoming regulatory dates (e.g., expected rule proposal dates).

This calendar is also linked under the “Tribal Air and Climate Resources” webpage under the “Policy and Planning” heading available at https://www.epa.gov/tribal-air.

The purpose of the calendar is to ensure that our Tribal partners are kept apprised of EPA activities that are relevant to them. If you have any questions about the calendars or any recommendations on how EPA can improve upon the calendars please do not hesitate to reach out to Toni Colon (colon.toni@epa.gov) and/or Tanya Abrahamian (abrahamian.tanya@epa.gov) with any feedback.


EPA releases new report on Climate Change and Social Vulnerability in the United States: A Focus on Six Impacts

EPA’s new report quantifies the degree to which four socially vulnerable populations— defined based on income, educational attainment, race and ethnicity, and age—may be more exposed to the highest impacts of climate change. The report quantifies six types of impacts: air quality and health, extreme temperature and health, extreme temperature and labor, coastal flooding and traffic, coastal flooding and property, and inland flooding and property. Access the report. To download the report’s findings related to the disproportionate risks of climate change to American Indian and Alaska Natives. To find more information about climate change: https://www.epa.gov/climate-change


Host Sites Needed For Summer Internship Program

The Institute for Tribal Environmental at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona is seeking air quality focused offices and programs to host a college student for an 8-week summer internship. Tribal environmental offices, EPA offices, and other tribal environmental organizations are encouraged to apply.

The interns will be highly motivated undergraduate or graduate students majoring in environmental or related careers from different colleges and universities nationwide. ITEP provides each student intern with a $4,800 stipend, and housing and travel allowances for interns that relocate. The host site provides a work-place and supervision for the intern.  Some internships may be virtual.  You are welcome to submit applications for both virtual projects and in-person projects.

The projects MUST focus on addressing air quality issues in tribal communities.

Submit an application online here  by the deadline of December 3, 2021.


NTAA Upcoming Calls

Contact Andy.Bessler@nau.edu if you have any questions about any call! *Registration instructions* When you register for the GoToWebinar, please remember to include your Tribe, Region, or Organization in parenthesis after your last name. This allows you to see everyone on the call and prevents us from conducting a roll-call, ultimately saving everyone’s time.


Mobile Sources Work Group: This monthly work group addresses all mobile source pollution issues. Attend by clicking here. Thursday, December 2, 2pm  ET
Wood Smoke Work Group: Join this work group every other month to address wood smoke issues in Indian Country. Attend by clicking here. Thursday, November 18,

2pm ET


EPA Policy Call: Call in to hear updates from EPA on policies, actions, and tools relevant to Indian Country and Air Quality. Attend by clicking here. Thursday, December 9,  2pm ET
Indoor Air Quality Work Group: Join this work group every other month to help support IAQ work throughout Indian Country. Attend by clicking here. Thursday, December 16, 2pm ET


The Institute for Tribal Environmental Professional (ITEP)

Click here for ITEP’s new Tribal Environmental Management and Planning Online Courses. Sign up for a self-paced course hosted by ITEP’s Waste and Response and Tribal Air Quality programs.  New courses have been added, so check it out!


ITEP’s American Indian Air Quality Training Program (AIAQTP) hosts the Building Performance: Improving IAQ in Cold Climates, Residential Building Science Review, Radon Fundamentals, Quality Assurance Fundamental, Writing a Quality Assurance Project Plan, Emissions Inventory Fundamentals, and Emissions Inventory Advanced.


AIAQTP Schedule and Registration 


Recorded Webinars

Looking for more information check out the Tribal Air Quality Media Space Channel. Recent webinars include an Introduction to Air Quality Programs, Emissions Inventories, Remote Professional Assistance, and Woodstoves in Indian Country. Older classics include a series on Air Quality Planning for Wildland Smoke, Tribal Air Program and Grants, Data Management, and the Clean Air Act.


ITEP’s Tribes and Climate Change Calendar includes conferences, trainings, webinars, and other events related to tribes and climate change.


Climate Change / Energy

NEW! Virtual Workshop Tribal Community-scale Solar, Solutions for Climate & Community Resilience

Monday, December 6; 9:30am – 12:00pm | Register Here

Who (would find it useful to attend): Tribal government leaders, Tribal staff, Tribal community members, Tribal strategic partners and businesses in energy and related sectors, all those planning, managing or building solar and related systems (i.e., telecom, microgrids, energy storage systems, tribal utility authorities) on tribal lands.


The Department of the Interior (DOI) is excited to announce an upcoming virtual listening session focused on climate change and Tribal youth. 

Information and registration for this listening session may be found on the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Tribal Climate Resilience (TCR) webpage.

This listening session is open to Tribal middle school, high school, and college students. This is an opportunity to voice your concerns, priorities, and experience to help shape policies and programs that promote and advance Tribal climate resilience.


US EPA Announces Upcoming Climate and Energy Webinars for State, Local, and Tribal Governments

The US EPA announces there will be many webinars on climate and energy topics offered by federal agencies and others during the month of October. All webinars are free of charge, but space may be limited or require registration in advance. For more information subscribe to the US EPA’s State and Local Energy Newsletter.


ITEP’s Climate Change Adaptation Training Courses registration is online!

Learn more about the courses and register here.


Toxics/Mobile Sources

 Final Air Toxics Standards for Carbon Black Production. The technology review of the standards for Carbon Black production major source and area facilities did not identify any developments that would further reduce hazardous air pollutant emissions beyond the original NESHAP. More information, including a summary fact sheet and a pre-publication version of the final rule, is available here.


Final Air Toxics Standards for Cyanide Chemicals Manufacturing

EPA is not amending the NESHAP as a part of the technology review. However, as a part of our technology review, we did identify previously unregulated emission sources and finalized changes to the NESHAP that add standards for these sources. More information is available here.


Final Air Toxics Standards for Flexible Polyurethane Foam NESHAP and RTR Final Rule

EPA identified one technology-related development that is a current industry practice. Accordingly, EPA is amending the definition of “hazardous air pollutants (HAP)-based adhesive” so that major source new and existing loop slitters are prohibited from using adhesives containing one percent or more by weight of total HAP. More information is available here.


Final Air Toxics Standards for Refractory Products Manufacturing

EPA identified one technology-related development that reflects current industry best practices. As a result, EPA is amending the work practices that are required to minimize air toxics emissions during scheduled maintenance of control devices for continuous kilns. More information is available here.


Indoor Air Quality

The EPA’s upcoming Integrated Pest Management (IPM) webinar on November 16 from 2-3:30 PM EST and is titled: “Termites: Eating You Out of House and Home”. If you are interested, feel free to sign up here.

More information about the webinar is below. Also, EPA’s IPM webinars occur monthly. Check out EPA’s website Upcoming Integrated Pest Management Webinars to register for these monthly webinars, as they are scheduled through June 2022. Take note that the IPM webinar scheduled for March 2022 is titled “Managing Bed Bugs with Limited Resources.”


Please join us for EPA’s next Indoor Air Quality Science Webinar

Using CO2 Monitoring to Manage Building Ventilation with guest speaker Andrew K. Persily, Ph.D. from the National Institute of Standards and Technology and hosted by Jordan Zambrana of EPA’s Indoor Environments Division on Wednesday, November 17 from 2-3:30 pm ET.

The measurement of indoor carbon dioxide concentrations has been used for many years to assess and control building ventilation rates, as well as to characterize indoor air quality. Over the years these applications of indoor COmonitoring have been misunderstood, despite the publication of technical papers and guidance documents and the organization of conference sessions in an attempt to reduce some of the confusion. There is renewed interest in such applications of CO2 measurement in the context of airborne infectious disease control. This presentation will review the application of indoor CO2 monitoring to building ventilation and IAQ and discuss several issues regarding these measurements and their interpretation. Note: This presentation reflects the opinions of the guest speaker and not necessarily those of the U.S. EPA. More information on the Featured Speakers here. Space is limited so save your seat here! 


Outdoor Air Affects Indoor Air, Especially During Wildfires: Take Steps to Protect Your Indoor Air Quality!

During a wildfire, smoke can make the outdoor air unhealthy to breathe. Local officials may advise you to stay indoors during a smoke event. You should be aware that some of the smoke from outdoors can enter your home and make it unhealthy to breathe indoor air, too.


There are things you can do, such as staying indoors with the doors and windows closed and filtering the air indoors to reduce your family’s exposure to smoke. Reducing exposure to smoke is important for everyone’s health — especially children, older adults, and people with heart or lung disease. See our webpage on Wildfires and Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) for steps you can take to reduce your exposure to wildfire smoke inside your home.



  1. New Research on DIY Air Cleaners to Reduce Wildfire Smoke Indoors– also see guidance below!
  2. Wildfire Smoke Employer Training Checklistsfor employee safety in OR and WA
  3. Updated EPA webpage on Emergencies and Indoor Air Quality: Includes tips on how to prepare for, respond to, and recover from weather-related and man-made emergencies and disasters that affect indoor environments, including Wildfires, Volcanic Eruptions, and Dust StormsPower OutagesHurricanes and FloodingExtreme HeatSnow and IceEarthquakes
  4. Two books for Indigenous Youth on COVID-19Our Smallest Warriors, Our Strongest Medicine, developed by Tribes and partners at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health (these are really well done – order copies here)
  5. New interagency hosted ed.gov website–  inventory of resources promoting healthy school environments
  6. Host sites needed for tribal air quality summer internship program– The Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals is seeking air quality focused offices and programs to host a college student for an 8-week summer internship. Tribal environmental offices, EPA offices, and other tribal environmental organizations are encouraged to apply by 12/3/21.
  7. 2021 State of Our Schools Reportfrom the 21st Century School Fund, the International WELL Building Institute, and the National Council on School Facilities released
  8. Consumer warning from FDA:Consumers that use of the Max-Lux Safe-T-Lite UV WAND may expose the user or any nearby person to unsafe levels of ultraviolet-C radiation and may cause injury to the skin, eyes, or both after a few seconds of use. Consumers may use the wand to try to disinfect surfaces and kill germs in the home or similar spaces. The FDA recommends that consumers consider using safer alternative disinfection methods.


Improving Environmental Health in Schools White Paper

The authors of this white paper are environmental health academics who recognize the importance of in-school education. However, we also understand that infectious disease transmission in schools is an existential challenge affecting the health of local communities and ultimately, society at large. We have extensive experience implementing environmental improvements both before and during the current pandemic. We wish to persuade the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as the lead Agency for protecting human health and the environment, that now is the time to revive and expand their School Integrated Pest Management (SIPM) initiative to improve environmental health in schools and document the tangible benefits that follow.


Need Temporary Power? Use Caution with Portable Generators! Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

During power outages, portable generators can be used to help temporarily restore power to a few key appliances like refrigerators, lights and fans. Portable generators that use fuels such as gasoline, natural gas or kerosene are widely available. However, if they are not used correctly they can be hazardous because their exhaust contains deadly fumes, like carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas you cannot see or smell but could kill you in minutes.


  • Do use portable generators outside and far away from buildings.
  • Do not use portable generators under any of the following conditions:
  • inside your house or garage
  • on balconies or near doors, vents or windows, and
  • near where anyone is sleeping.

For more information please visit EPA’s websites on Safely Provide Power for Lighting, Cooking and Heating During an Emergency and Carbon Monoxides’ Impact on Indoor Air Quality


U.S. Department of Education Encourages Use of American Rescue Plan Funds to Improve Ventilation and IAQ in Schools

Indoor air quality is critical to reopening schools safely and keeping them open. The U.S. Department of Education has released new guidance encouraging the use of American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds to improve ventilation systems and make other indoor air quality improvements in schools to prevent the spread of COVID- 19 and tackle longstanding school ventilation improvement needs. The new Department of Education guidance highlights EPA resources to support investments in improved ventilation and indoor air quality. Use the following resources from EPA to supplement the information in the guidance:

not use air cleaners that intentionally generate ozone in occupied spaces.


Be sure to subscribe to CodeTalk, HUD’s Office of Native American Programs newsletter, for webinars and opportunities!