||14 THE THIRTY-SIXTH ANNUAL REYNOLDS LECTURE ground in many areas of air-pollution control; its alumni are now to be found in top positions in the federal air-pollution agency and in many of the state agencies outside California. The Los Angeles Air Pollution effort was directed not only at cars but also at all forms of air pollution. They wrote some tough laws and made them stick. One story, possibly apocryphal, indicates their practical wisdom in getting things done. They got the regulations written so that, when a company violated a regulation, its highest-ranking local representative had to appear in court and pay the misdemeanor fine. The Los Angeles vice president of the oil company I worked for was said to have raged at his engineers to get into compliance with the law quickly, because the law required him "to appear in court in the company of all the drunks and prostitutes which the L.A. police had arrested that day." The Clean Air Act of 1970 However, outside of Los Angeles, things proceeded slowly. The federal government began to study air pollution in the late 1950's and got some powers to act in the air-pollution acts of 1963 and 1967. Those acts had some excellent features, and laid the groundwork for much of our current air pollution laws, but the enforcement provisions in those acts relied mostly on persuasion and finger-pointing. In 1970, during the "great environmental awakening," Congress passed the Clean Air Act of 1970. This is a remarkably stern and unyielding document, which, I think, reflects the belief of Congress that the air-pollution-control agencies in most states and cities and the federal air-pollution agency were unable to do much. They decided that the only way to get something done was to write a stiff law with deadlines for accomplishment of results and fines for violators. Since the signing of that law, the story of air pollution in the U.S.A. is largely the story of the efforts of the various parties to implement it or prevent its implementation from causing them hardship. Because the minimization-of-damage-plus-costs approach, which I have suggested is ultimately the best way, is very complex to implement, Congress, in the Clean Air Act of 1970, chose the simpler route of assuming that the major air pollutants were of the threshold-value type, as sketched on the right most of the two preceding figures. If this is true, then it is possible to set standards for the concentration of pollutants in the atmosphere with the knowledge that, if these standards are properly set and are never exceeded, then there will be no air-pollution damage ever, anywhere. The administrators of the act were directed to set standards at the concentrations that correspond to "no measurable effect," allowing an adequate margin of safety.