District businesses selling food or alcohol are required to charge $.05 for each disposable paper or plastic carryout bag. Find out about DC's Bag Law.
The Air Quality Division works to protect the health and welfare of District of Columbia residents, visitors, and the natural environment by reducing the concentration of pollutants in the outdoor air. The Division issues permits, performs permit inspection and enforcement of laws, and monitors air quality while developing plans for its improvement.
Apply for an Air Pollutant Permit
The Division reviews designs and modifications for new and existing pollution sources and controls. Permits are issued allowing sources to emit limited amounts of pollution, meeting air quality laws.
Air Quality Inspections, Enforcement, and Outreach
The Division inspects major and minor sources of air pollution in the District, enforces air quality laws (including responding to outdoor air pollution problems), and performs education and outreach on air quality issues. Related work includes:
- Asbestos Abatement - Ensures that asbestos removal contractors protect their own health and safety, and the health and safety of building occupants and the general public.
- Vehicle Anti-Idling- With a few exceptions, motor vehicles powered by gasoline or diesel are not allowed to idle for more than three minutes while the vehicle is parked, stopped or standing.
- Radon- The Division performs outreach and education on Radon in homes in the District. Residents can obtain a free Radon test kit.
The Division measures pollutants in the District's air on a regular basis and creates plans to improve the District’s air. It also audits the Vehicle Emissions Inspection and Maintenance Program.
Recent Notable Events Related to Air Quality
- Public Notice: Draft 2016 Annual Air Monitoring Network Plan
- New Air Quality law addresses enforcement, demand-response generators, and mold.
- 2014 Air Quality Trends Report