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Doña Ana County, New Mexico

Introduction

Doña Ana County is 3,804-square-miles in the south-central section of New Mexico with an estimated 2009 population of 206,419. Doña Ana County borders El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. This area is considered part of the Paso del Norte air shed, which includes El Paso County, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. This region of the state has historically had air quality problems, including particulate matter and ozone pollution.

There is presently one nonattainment area within Doña Ana County. In Anthony, NM, which lies on the border of Texas and New Mexico, there is a particulate matter 10 microns or less in size (PM10) nonattainment area. This area was designated nonattainment for PM10 by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 1991. In 1995, the EPA declared a 42 square-mile region in the southeast corner of the County on the border of Texas and Mexico as a marginal nonattainment area for the 1-hour ozone standard. The nonattainment area includes the City of Sunland Park, Santa Teresa, and La Union, New Mexico.

The1-hour ozone standard was revoked by EPA in 2004 with the adoption of the 1997 8-hour ozone standard. Due to the revocation of the 1-hour ozone standard, a maintenance plan for the 1997 ozone standard was submitted to EPA in 2007 for the Sunland Park area. This area was redesignated by EPA to attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone standard. Click here for a map of the Sunland Park area or the Anthony nonattainment area.

 

Nonattainment Plans

2007 Sunland Park Ozone Maintenance Plan

 

Other Nonattainment Plans

 

The Natural Events Action Plan

In recent years, Doña Ana County has not met the federal ambient air quality standards for PM10. These high levels of PM10 are largely due to dust storms throughout the area. While much of the dust in the Doña Ana County area is caused by natural events such as high wind speeds and ambient dry conditions, man-made dust sources are on the increase as the County becomes more populated and development increases. In December of 2000, a Natural Events Action Plan (NEAP) for Doña Ana County was submitted to EPA for review. In 2005, a reevaluation of the 2000 NEAP was submitted to EPA for review.

The focus of the NEAP is to control man-made sources of wind blown dust. This plan includes agreements between primary stakeholders (such the New Mexico State Highway and Transportation Department and New Mexico State University) and the State of New Mexico Environment Department (NMED), dust ordinances on both the city and county level, educational outreach tools, documentation of exceedances, and tools to minimize the public’s exposure to PM10.

 

2005 Reevaluation of Natural Events Action Plan

2005 Reevaluation of Doña Ana County Natural Events Action Plan

 

2000 Natural Events Action Plan

2000 Doña Ana County Natural Events Action Plan

 

Other NEAP Documents


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