Karen Hammack


In order to evaluate the effectiveness of the Clean Air Act of 1970, this Note will first examine how one heavily industrialized state has responded to "having a stick taken to it." Additionally, the federal-state relations which have resulted from the shift in emphasis from state to federal control, and industry's onslaught on the courts for judicial review of actions taken by both federal and state agencies will be examined. In particular, the central role which the sulfur dioxide standards have played will serve to illustrate some of the areas in which the Clean Air Act has encountered difficulties. "Sulfur dioxide is the primary pollutant emitted by the burning of coal, and the nation's increased dependence on coal has created a serious test of Congress' technology-forcing policy embodied in the 1970 Amendments. This is so because the control of this particular pollutant has demanded technological innovation and costly improvements to new and existing plants. As a result, industry and particularly the electric utilities, have made a concerted effort to delay implementation and undermine the deadlines established by Congress. The latter portion of this Note will consider their success rate in view of the proposed amendments to the Clean Air Act to be voted upon by the 95th Congress.