The air in Los Angeles is better than it has been in the past, but that isn't stopping four environmental and health groups from suing the EPA to do a better job. Two national groups (the Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Council) are filing the lawsuit with two local groups (Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles and Communities for a Better Environment) in the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals against the EPA's "deficient smog plan," as Earth justice attorney Adrian Martinez put it to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

The EPA's plan – also supported by the South Coast Air Quality Management District and the California Air Resources Board – acknowledges that "90 percent of NOx emissions and 60 percent of VOC emissions come from vehicles," and that those contribute to smog and pollution. The four groups say that the problem is that the plan has tremendous loopholes that allow polluters to continue their old habits. The director of the Sierra Club's My Generation Campaign, Evan Gillespie, told the Tribune, "We are extremely disappointed to see this loophole was relied on again in the plan submitted by the air district. We have all the tools at our finger tips to solve this problem. It is really at this point not a technological problem but a political problem."

The "tools" Gillespie referred to include electric cars and "other less-polluting technologies," the Tribune notes. Read more here or listen to an audio report here.

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