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Cache air could bring EPA sanctions

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While Utah County folks are breathing easier, Cache County could be the next target of Environmental Protection Agency sanctions.

If the "very unhealthy air" plaguing Cache County doesn't blow away soon, officials worry they'll be next on the EPA's list of "nonattainment areas."

"We're at the point now that if we have one or two more days of real high readings, we could essentially be in violation," said Rick Sprott, director of the Utah Division of Air Quality. "We're about as close as we can get without violating now."

If placed on the EPA's watch, Cache County would undergo intense federal oversight.

For the past 10 days the air in Cache Valley has caused some principals to keep kids indoors during recess, kept asthmatics on edge and left officials scratching their heads.

But officials say Logan does not have the worst air in the nation, unlike earlier reports released this week. Preliminary numbers indicated that Logan had record-breaking pollution levels in Utah and the nation last week. Upon further testing, the pollution levels turned out to be significantly lower but still twice the health standard.