EPA Publishes Final CSAPR Group 3 Rule In The Federal Register

On April 30, 2021, just one day prior to the 2021 ozone season, EPA published the final 40 CFR Part 97, Subpart GGGGG, CSAPR NOx Ozone Season Group 3 Trading Program in the Federal Register. The CSAPR Group 3 rule requires additional NOx reductions from power plants located in twelve (12) states beginning with the 2021 ozone season. The twelve (12) affected States are Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. The new Group 3 Trading Program is in addition to the existing Groups 1 and 2 NOx Ozone Trading Programs. The rulemaking also includes minor technical/administrative changes to the other CSAPR subparts.

Subpart GGGGG defines distinct Group 3 NOx ozone season State budgets for 2021, 2022, 2023 and “2024 and Beyond.” In general, one sees a reduction in the State budgets each year until the State budgets become fixed for the 2024 and Beyond ozone seasons. For example, reference the Group 3 State Budgets for the 2021 ozone season compared to the State budgets for 2024 and Beyond, as listed in the rule [FR-Vol. 86-No. 82, pages 23123-23124].

EPA also finalized Federal Implementation Implementation Plans (FIPs) for 22 states to address interstate transport of ozone pollution under the Clean Air Act’s “good neighbor” provisions. The final rule becomes effective on June 29, 2021. A copy of the Federal Register publication is available here.

EPA Administrator Signs Final Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Update

On March 15, 2021, the EPA Administrator signed the final revisions to 40 CFR Part 97, Subpart GGGGG, CSAPR NOx Ozone Season Group 3 Trading Program. Subpart GGGGG requires additional NOx reductions from power plants located in twelve (12) states beginning with the 2021 ozone season. The twelve (12) affected States are Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. The new Group 3 Trading Program would be in addition to the existing Groups 1 and 2 NOx Ozone Trading Programs. The final rule does not include ozone season NOx emission limits for non-EGUs. The rule will become effective sixty (60) days after the Federal Register publication date. VIM will post a copy of the Federal Register publication when it becomes available. A copy of the prepublication version of the rule can be found here.

New Year Resolutions: 5 Tips to Improve Your Air Compliance

It’s a New Year, and one that we couldn’t be happier to see arrive. The new year is the perfect time to take stock and set goals for the year ahead. It’s time to consider New Year’s Resolutions for improving your air compliance programs. We’ve compiled our Top 5 great ideas to consider when planning for the year ahead:

1. Perform Checks on your CEMLink 6 System

Clean up unwanted files off your CEMLink 6 hard drives and check your system’s available storage space, CPU usage, and SQL Server memory usage. Exported files that are no longer needed should be removed. Be sure you have good backups of your PLC and Database files on an external device, and make sure you have a useable backup of CEMLink 6. Make sure that all alarms are acknowledged with proper reason codes and action codes and check that automatic backups are included in your scheduler and are working properly. Check PC/VM storage space. Verify your QA Test Plan/Plan ahead of this year’s CGAs/Linearities and use the Compliance Calendar to help plan for these events. As always, if you have questions or wish for VIM to help, contact VIM Support.Read more »

EPA Publishes Revisions to the Civil Monetary Penalty Inflation Adjustment Rule

On December 23, 2020, EPA published revisions to 40 CFR Part 19, Civil Monetary Penalty Inflation Adjustment Rule in the Federal Register which increased violations to the Clean Air Act from $101,439 per day per violation to $102,638 per day per violation. The rule also increases the monetary penalty for violations to the Clean Water Act from $55,800 to $56,460. This civil penalty applies to violations that occurred after November 2, 2015, where penalties are assessed on or after December 23, 2020. The rule becomes effective on December 23, 2020. A copy of the rule is available here.

 

Maximize Your Company’s Environmental Compliance

Updated Original Post Dated: April 3, 2019

A Data Acquisition System (DAS) is a crucial tool for gathering and analyzing your plant’s compliance data. When it comes to ensuring environmental compliance, DO NOT take any chances that could lead to fines or enforcement. Here are 5 key assessments you NEED to consider when evaluating your current compliance system(s). The right solution can maximize your company’s environmental compliance while significantly reducing risk.

1. Obsolete Operating Systems and Databases

On average, Microsoft obsoletes its software systems every seven years, ensuring each of its products has a definitive lifecycle. This means your current software, if not updated, may no longer be fully supported in the event of a catastrophe. When it comes to risk mitigation, staying ahead of your system’s lifecycle is a top priority in order to demonstrate to environmental regulatory authorities that you are doing what it takes to avoid a potentially damaging system crash. Updating regularly is a good way to prove compliance with industry and government standards.Read more »

Alberta Publishes Draft Revisions to 1998 CEMS Code

On October 13, 2020, Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) published a second draft of the 1998 Continuous Emission Monitoring System (CEMS) Code.  On the same day, AEP hosted a webinar to provide information concerning the proposed revisions to the CEMS Code.  AEP intends to issue the final CEMS Code after January 1, 2021 and the CEMS Code would tentatively become effective on January 1, 2022.  A copy of the draft CEMS Code, supporting documents as well as a recording of the AEP webinar is available at www.alberta.ca/continuous-emissions-monitoring.aspx.  A brochure summarizing the significant revisions to the CEMS code is available here.

EPA Signs Final Revisions to 40 CFR Part 63

EPA Seal

On October 1, 2020, the EPA Administrator signed final revisions to 40 CFR Part 63, National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Source Categories.

The rule will become effective sixty (60) days after publication in the Federal Register.  The rule is designed to formalize EPA’s 2018 guidance memorandum which overturned EPA previous policy of “once in, always in” (OIAI), which is often referred to as the May 1995 Seitz Memorandum.

The rule also finalizes revisions to the Part 63 General Provisions clarifying “that a major source can be reclassified to area source status at any time upon reducing its potential to emit (PTE) hazardous air pollutants (HAP) to below the major source thresholds (MST) of 10 tons per year (tpy) of any single HAP and 25 tpy of any combination of HAP.”

Additionally, the final rule specifies compliance dates, notification, and recordkeeping provisions applicable to sources electing to reclassify to area source status or to sources reverting back to major source status.  A copy of the prepublication version of the rule is available here.