US EPA Seeks Comments on Proposed Rule on Hazardous Air Pollutants


By Leigh Ann Burns Naas posted 02-28-2019 15:06


On February 7, 2019, the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) released a proposed rule in Volume 84, Number 26, of the Federal Register entitled “National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Coal- and Oil-Fired Electric Utility Steam Generating Units—Reconsideration of Supplemental Finding and Residual Risk and Technology Review.”

According to Volume 84, Number 26, of the Federal Register, the US EPA is proffering a change to its response to Michigan v. EPA, a US Supreme Court decision that “held that the [US] EPA erred by not considering cost in its determination that regulation under section 112 of the Clean Air Act (CAA) of hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions from coal- and oil-fired electric utility steam generating units (EGUs) is appropriate and necessary.” Indeed, the Federal Register notes that the Agency “proposes to find that it is not ‘appropriate and necessary’ to regulate HAP emissions from coal- and oil-fired EGUs, thereby reversing the Agency’s prior conclusion under CAA section 112(n)(1)(A) and correcting flaws in the Agency’s prior response to Michigan v. EPA.”

The US EPA is seeking comment on several elements of the proposed rule, including “on whether the [US] EPA has the authority or obligation to delist EGUs from CAA section 112(c) and rescind (or to rescind without delisting) the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Coal- and Oil-Fired EGUs, commonly known as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS),” the Federal Register says. For detailed information on the proposed rule and the comments sought, see Volume 84, Number 26, of the Federal Register.

The due date to submit comments is April 8, 2019. Comments may be submitted online and should be distinguished by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OAR–2018–0794. Although the US EPA favors online submission versus other forms of delivering comments, comments also may be submitted by email, fax, mail, and hand/courier delivery. For more information on the requirements for submitting comments via methods other than online, please see the “Addresses” section of Volume 84, Number 26, of the Federal Register. A forthcoming issue of the Federal Register will provide details on the public hearing(s) the US EPA will hold on this rule and will outline the process for registering to speak.

Please contact Mary Johnson or Nick Hutson of the Sector Policies and Programs Division of the US EPA Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards with any questions. For additional contact information for these individuals, please refer to the Federal Register.