Skip to Content

Rule

Standards of Performance for Industrial-Commercial-Institutional Steam Generating Units

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule; amendment.

SUMMARY:

We are amending the current provisions in the standards of performance for industrial-commercial-institutional steam generating units which permit owners and operators of new steam generating units located at chemical manufacturing plants and petroleum refineries burning high-nitrogen byproduct/wastes to petition Start Printed Page 49831the Administrator for a site specific nitrogen oxides ( NOX) emission limit. The amendment extends the provisions to owners and operators of new steam generating units located at pulp and paper mills.

DATES:

This direct final rule will be effective on November 30, 2001 without further notice, unless significant adverse comments are received by October 31, 2001.

If significant material adverse comments are received by October 31, 2001, this direct final rule will be withdrawn and the comments addressed in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. If no significant material adverse comments are received, no further action will be taken on the proposal and this direct final rule will become effective on November 30, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

By U.S. Postal Service, send comments (in duplicate if possible) to: Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center (6102), Attention Docket Number A-2001-18, U.S. EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460. In person or by courier, deliver comments (in duplicate if possible) to: Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center (6102), Attention Docket Number A-2001-18, U.S. EPA, 401 M Street, SW., Washington, DC 20460. The EPA requests that a separate copy of each public comment be sent to the contact person listed below.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mr. Fred Porter, Combustion Group, Emission Standards Division (MD-13), U.S. EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711, (919) 541-5251, e-mail: porter.fred@epa.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comments. We are publishing this direct final rule without prior proposal because we view this as a noncontroversial amendment and do not anticipate adverse comments. However, in the Proposed Rules section of this Federal Register, we are publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal in the event that adverse comments are filed.

If we receive any significant adverse comments, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that this direct final rule will not take effect. We will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. We will not institute a second comment period on this direct final rule. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time.

Docket. The docket is an organized and complete file of information compiled by EPA in developing this direct final rule. The docket is a dynamic file because material is added throughout the rulemaking process. The docketing system is intended to allow members of the public and industries involved to readily identify and locate documents so that they can effectively participate in the rulemaking process. Along with the proposed and promulgated standards and their preambles, the docket contains the record in the case of judicial review. The docket number for this rulemaking is A-2001-18.

World Wide Web (WWW). In addition to being available in the docket, electronic copies of this action will be posted on the Technology Transfer Network's (TTN) policy and guidance information page http://www.epa.gov/​ttn/​caaa. The TTN provides information and technology exchange in various areas of air pollution control. If more information regarding the TTN is needed, call the TTN HELP line at (919) 541-5384.

Regulated Entities. The regulated categories and entities that potentially will be affected by this amendment include the following:

CategoryNAICS codesSIC codesExamples of potentially regulated entities
Pulp and Paper32226Pulp and Paper Mills.

This table is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be regulated by this action. This table lists the types of entities that we are now aware could potentially be regulated by this action. Other types of entities not listed in the table could also be regulated. To determine whether your facility, company, business, organization, etc., is regulated by this action, you should carefully examine the applicability criteria in § 60.41b of the rule. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed in the preceding FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

Judicial Review. Under section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), judicial review of the action taken by this direct final rule is available only on the filing of a petition for review in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit by November 30, 2001. Under section 307(b)(2) of the CAA, the requirements that are subject to today's action may not be challenged later in civil or criminal proceedings brought by EPA to enforce these requirements.

Under section 307(d)(7) of the CAA, only an objection to a rule or procedure raised with reasonable specificity during the period for public comment or public hearing may be raised during judicial review.

I. Background

On November 25, 1986 (51 FR 42768), we promulgated standards of performance to limit NOX emissions from new industrial-commercial-institutional steam generating units. Within the chemical manufacturing industry and the petroleum refining industry, byproduct/waste gases or liquids are often co-fired with natural gas or oil in steam generating units. Although new steam generating units co-firing byproduct/wastes with natural gas or oil must comply with the same NOX emission limits as units firing only natural gas or oil, in most cases, that presents no problems.

Nitrogen oxides emissions, however, are influenced by the presence of nitrogen in the materials burned, and as we discussed in the Federal Register notices proposing and promulgating the standards, co-firing high-nitrogen byproduct/wastes can lead to a significant increase in NOX emission levels. As a result, to ensure that the NOX emission limits were not unreasonable, we included provisions in the standards for petitioning the Administrator for a site specific NOX emission limit for a new steam generating unit located at a chemical plant or petroleum refinery where it could be shown that co-firing specific byproduct/wastes containing nitrogen prevents compliance with the NOX emission limits.

The provisions require that an owner or operator petitioning the Administrator present sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the unit is able to comply with the NOX emission limits when firing natural gas or oil, but unable to comply when co-firing Start Printed Page 49832byproduct/waste under the same conditions. Thus, the owner or operator must first measure NOX emissions when firing only natural gas or oil and demonstrate compliance with the NOX emission limits. Excess air levels and other operating conditions must be recorded, and the owner or operator must then measure NOX emissions while co-firing the byproduct/waste with natural gas or oil under these same conditions.

Emissions measured when co-firing the byproduct/waste serve as the basis for establishing a site specific NOX emission limit applicable only during those periods when byproduct/waste is co-fired in the steam generating unit. During periods when byproduct/waste is not co-fired, the unit must comply with the NOX emission limits in the standards.

As mentioned, co-firing most byproduct/wastes does not present a problem with respect to compliance with the NOX emission limits. As a result, in the 15 years since adoption of the standards, only three site specific NOX emission limits have been proposed and promulgated for new steam generating units located at chemical plants or petroleum refineries.

On April 15, 1998 (63 FR 18504), we promulgated national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP) to limit emissions of hazardous air pollutants (HAP) from pulp and paper mills. The standards require control of HAP waste gases from certain pulp vents. One alternative to control the HAP waste gases is to co-fire them in a steam generating unit.

Recently, it has come to our attention that the most reasonable alternative at one pulp and paper mill subject to the NESHAP is to co-fire the HAP waste gases in a steam generating unit subject to the standards of performance for industrial-commercial-institutional steam generating units. The HAP waste gases, however, contain nitrogen compounds and, as a result, the steam generating unit may not comply with the emission limit for NOX emissions.

Other alternatives, such as installing a dedicated incinerator to burn the HAP waste gases, are substantially more costly and, in addition, could result in greater NOX emissions. If the steam generating unit were located at a chemical plant or a petroleum refinery, the owners and operators could petition the Administrator for a site specific NOX emission limit. Because the steam generating unit is located at a pulp and paper mill, however, as the standards now exist, that is not possible.

In retrospect, the provisions to petition the Administrator for a site specific NOX emission limit were included in the standards for steam generating units located at chemical plants or petroleum refineries only because those were the only two industries which demonstrated a need for that type of flexibility in the standards at the time they were developed. With development of the NESHAP for pulp and paper mills, as illustrated by the example outlined above, it is clear that the pulp and paper industry also needs that flexibility. Consequently, we are amending the standards of performance for industrial-commercial-institutional steam generating units to extend the provisions to petition the Administrator for a site specific NOX emission limit to owners and operators of new steam generating units located at pulp and paper mills which co-fire byproduct/wastes.

II. Administrative Requirements

A. Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review

Under Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993), we must determine whether the regulatory action is “significant” and, therefore, subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the requirements of the Executive Order. The Executive Order defines “significant regulatory action” as one that is likely to result in a rule that may:

(1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more, or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities;

(2) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency;

(3) materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or

(4) raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in the Executive Order.

It has been determined that this direct final rule does not qualify as a “significant regulatory action” under the terms of Executive Order 12866 and, therefore, is not subject to review by OMB.

B. Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution or Use

This direct final rule is not subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001) because it is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

C. Executive Order 13132, Federalism

Executive Order 13132, entitled “Federalism” (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999), requires us to develop an accountable process to ensure “meaningful and timely input by State and local officials in the development of regulatory policies that have federalism implications.” “Policies that have federalism implications” are defined in the Executive Order to include regulations that have “substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.”

Under section 6 of Executive Order 13132, we may not issue a regulation that has federalism implications, that imposes substantial direct compliance costs, and that is not required by statute, unless the Federal government provides the funds necessary to pay the direct compliance costs incurred by State and local governments, or we consult with State and local officials early in the process of developing the proposed regulation. Also, we may not issue a regulation that has federalism implications and that preempts State law, unless we consult with State and local officials early in the process of developing the proposed regulation.

This direct final rule does not have federalism implications. It will not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government, as specified in Executive Order 13132. Thus, the requirements of section 6 of the Executive Order do not apply to this direct final rule.

D. Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

Executive Order 13175, entitled “Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments” (65 FR 67249, November 6, 2000), requires us to develop an accountable process to ensure “meaningful and timely input by tribal officials in the development of regulatory policies that have tribal implications.” “Policies that have tribal implications” are defined in the Executive Order to include regulations that have “substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal government and the Indian tribes, or on Start Printed Page 49833the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes.”

This direct final rule does not have tribal implications. It will not have substantial direct effects on tribal governments, on the relationship between the Federal government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes, as specified in Executive Order 13175. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this direct final rule.

E. Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children From Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks

Executive Order 13045 “Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997), applies to any rule that: (1) is determined to be “economically significant” as defined under Executive Order 12866, and (2) concerns an environmental health or safety risk that we have reason to believe may have a disproportionate effect on children. If the regulatory action meets both criteria, we must evaluate the environmental health or safety effects of the planned rule on children, and explain why the planned regulation is preferable to other potentially effective and reasonably feasible alternatives we considered.

We interpret Executive Order 13045 as applying only to those regulatory actions that are based on health or safety risks, such that the analysis required under section 5-501 of the Executive Order has the potential to influence the regulation. This direct final rule is not subject to Executive Order 13045 because it is based on technology performance and not on health or safety risks. Also, this direct final rule is not “economically significant.”

F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA), Public Law 104-4, establishes requirements for Federal agencies to assess the effects of their regulatory actions on State, local and tribal governments and the private sector. Under section 202 of the UMRA, we generally must prepare a written statement, including a cost-benefit analysis, for proposed and final rules with “Federal mandates” that may result in expenditures to State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or to the private sector, of $100 million or more in any 1 year. Before promulgating a rule for which a written statement is needed, section 205 of the UMRA generally requires us to identify and consider a reasonable number of regulatory alternatives and adopt the least costly, most cost-effective or least burdensome alternative that achieves the objective of the rule. The provisions of section 205 do not apply when they are inconsistent with applicable law. Moreover, section 205 allows us to adopt an alternative other than the least costly, most cost-effective or least burdensome alternative if the Administrator publishes with the final rule an explanation why that alternative was not adopted. Before we establish any regulatory requirements that may significantly or uniquely affect small governments, including tribal governments, we must develop a small government agency plan under section 203 of the UMRA. The plan must provide for notifying potentially affected small governments, enabling officials of affected small governments to have meaningful and timely input in the development of our regulatory proposals with significant Federal intergovernmental mandates, and informing, educating, and advising small governments on compliance with the regulatory requirements.

We have determined that this direct final rule does not contain a Federal mandate that may result in expenditures of $100 million or more for State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or the private sector in any 1 year. Thus, this direct final rule is not subject to the requirements of sections 202 and 205 of the UMRA.

We have also determined that this direct final rule contains no regulatory requirements that might significantly or uniquely affect small governments.

G. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), as Amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (SBREFA), 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.

The RFA generally requires an agency to prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements under the Administrative Procedure Act or any other statute unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions.

For purposes of assessing the impacts of this direct final rule on small entities, small entity is defined as (1) A small business in the regulated industry which has less than 750 employees; (2) a small governmental jurisdiction that is a government of a city, county, town, school district or special district with a population of less than 50,000; or (3) a small organization that is any not-for-profit enterprise that is independently owned and operated and is not dominant in its field.

After considering the economic impacts of this direct final rule on small entities, we have concluded that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. This direct final rule will not impose any requirements on small entities because it does not impose any additional regulatory requirements.

H. Paperwork Reduction Act

The Office of Management and Budget approved the information collection requirements contained in the standards under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., at the time the rules were promulgated on November 25, 1986.

The amendment contained in this direct final rule results in no changes to the information collection requirements of the standards or guidelines and will have no impact on the information collection estimate of project cost and hour burden made and approved by OMB during the development of the standards and guidelines. Therefore, the information collection requests have not been revised.

An Agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The OMB control numbers for our regulations are listed in 40 CFR part 9 and 40 CFR chapter 15.

I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act

Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104-113, § 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272 note) directs us to use voluntary consensus standards in our regulatory activities unless to do so would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies. The NTTAA directs us to provide Congress, through OMB, explanations when we decide not to use available and applicable voluntary consensus standards.

This direct final rule amendment does not involve technical standards. Therefore, it is not subject to NTTAA.

J. Congressional Review Act

The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801, et seq., as added by the Start Printed Page 49834Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. We will submit a report containing this direct final rule and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of this direct final rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This direct final rule is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 60

End List of Subjects Start Signature

Dated: September 20, 2001.

Christine Todd Whitman,

Administrator.

End Signature

For the reasons stated in the preamble, title 40, chapter I, part 60 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended to read as follows:

Start Part

PART 60—[AMENDED]

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 60 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

End Authority

Subpart Db—[Amended]

Start Amendment Part

2. Section 60.41b is amended by revising the definition of

End Amendment Part
Definitions.
* * * * *

Byproduct/waste means any liquid or gaseous substance produced at chemical manufacturing plants, petroleum refineries, or pulp and paper mills (except natural gas, distillate oil, or residual oil) and combusted in a steam generating unit for heat recovery or for disposal. Gaseous substances with carbon dioxide levels greater than 50 percent or carbon monoxide levels greater than 10 percent are not byproduct/waste for the purpose of this subpart.

* * * * *

Pulp and paper mills means industrial plants which are classified by the Department of Commerce under North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Code 322 or Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Code 26.

* * * * *
End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 01-24075 Filed 9-28-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6560-50-P