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Clean Air Plan

Victoria Air Quality Research Plan

Transportation Chapter of the 2020
Comprehensive Plan

4.8 Air Quality

Air pollution is a problem facing most urban areas. Ozone is a colorless,odorless gas that occurs both in the upper atmosphere and at ground level.The ozone that occurs in the upper atmosphere (stratosphere) protects the earth from harmful ultraviolet radiation. Ground level ozone is formed when pollutants react chemically with sunlight.

Ground-level ozone forms readily in the atmosphere during hot summer weather, but it is not emitted directly into the air. It is formed by the reaction of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's) and Nitrogen Oxides (NOX) in the presence of sunlight. VOC's come from things that evaporate like
gasoline, paint fumes, lighter fluid and consumer products. NOX is emitted from motor vehicles, power plants and other sources of combustion like gas-powered lawn equipment. High accumulations of ground level ozone can be harmful to health in a number of ways, including irritation of the respiratory system, aggravation of asthma, and can cause headaches, nausea
and eye irritation.

In 1990 Victoria County was classified as a non-attainment area for ozone under the Federal Clean Air Act. However, after three years of clean monitoring data, Victoria was reclassified as a near non-attainment area on March 7, 1995. This means that Victoria is close to exceeding the federal
air quality limit for ozone. In order to qualify as an ozone attainment area, a region may not exceed maximum air pollution levels on more than three days during any three-year monitoring period. Failure to comply with air quality standards could result in the loss of federal transportation
funds and restrictions on the growth of businesses in the region. The city and county have taken a proactive approach by developing air quality strategies that will continue to ensure the area's air quality. These efforts include continued monitoring, planning and public education efforts.

4.10 Summary

Much like the various support systems of the human body, a well-maintained and balanced transportation system can provide for a healthy, stable and strong Victoria. A good transportation system should support the vital functions of a city by circulating people and goods around the community with minimal delays, a choice of travel modes, and without degrading the air quality or the environment. By maintaining and by providing timely upgrades to the existing roadway network, Victoria can continue to benefit from a safe and efficient means of transportation. Much like an athlete that goes through rigorous training to perform better, Victoria must work at bringing
the various modes of transportation together. By providing better connectivity to the barge canal, rail, the airport and public transportation, Victoria can make itself stronger and more competitive
economically. Without that connectivity and without providing alternatives modes of transportation such as public transportation, hike/bike facilities and sidewalks, Victoria can lose the vitality and accessibility that contributes to its quality of life and end up competing in the consolation bracket instead of forging to the front. A coordinated circulation system that provides several transportation alternatives can work better, cost less and improve the city's environment as well as its attractiveness to businesses. A well-maintained and thought out transportation system is not only needed to attract business, it is also needed to provide a safe and pleasing experience for the citizens of Victoria and for those that travel through our city.

4.11 Goals and Objectives

Goal 4: Develop transportation strategies that will reduce dependence on the automobile and continue to ensure the city's clean air quality.

Objective 4.1: Increase awareness of and encourage the use of alternative transportation options.

Victoria County Near Non-Attainment Strategy 2002-2003 Adobe Acrobat Reader

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