Air Quality Standards

Part 1:  NAAQS Quiz (Short answer)

Go to EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards website homepage at Review the details of NAAQS for the criteria pollutants and answer the following questions:


Part 2: Choosing national air quality priorities (short essay answer)

Review the background information on each of the pollutants covered under the NAAQS and, based on the available information and considering the questions you addressed above, indicate which ambient air pollutant you believe should be a national regulatory priority for the United States and why. Support your choice by describing the types of health consequences associated with the pollutant (including any susceptible populations), its major sources, and when the standards were last reviewed and/or changed. Then, provide a brief explanation of one or more global implications for regulation of this pollutant by the United States. Be sure to cite your sources.

Student Response: 

This question will be scored using the rubric below.


Part 3:  Identify which pollutants significantly contribute to these issues 

Although many pollutants get a bad reputation, certain types of gas emissions contribute more to specific environmental issues.  Review section 4.1 in your text and the background information on each of the pollutants covered under the NAAQS. Choose from among the eight pollutants below and fill in the name of the correct pollutant in the grid below.