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Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Georgia: Control of Gasoline Sulfur and Volatility

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).


Final rule.


EPA is approving a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision, submitted by the State of Georgia through the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (GAEPD), establishing low-sulfur and low-Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) requirements for gasoline distributed in the 13-county Atlanta nonattainment area and 32 surrounding attainment counties. Georgia developed these fuel requirements to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOX) and volatile organic compounds (VOC) as part of the State's strategy to achieve the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone in the Atlanta nonattainment area. EPA is approving Georgia's fuel requirements into the SIP because these fuel requirements are in accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (the Act), and are necessary for the Atlanta nonattainment area to achieve the 1-hour ozone NAAQS in a timely manner.


This final rule is effective on March 25, 2002.


Copies of the State submittal(s) are available at the following addresses for inspection during normal business hours:

Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, Air Planning Branch, 61 Start Printed Page 8201Forsyth Street, SW, Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Lynorae Benjamin, (404) 562-9040.

Air Protection Branch, Georgia Environmental Protection Division, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, 4244 International Parkway, Suite 120, Atlanta, Georgia 30354. Telephone (404) 363-7000.

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Lynorae Benjamin, Air Quality Modeling and Transportation Section, Air Planning Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, Region 4, Environmental Protection Agency, Atlanta Federal Center, 61 Forsyth Street, SW, Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. The telephone number is (404) 562-9040. Ms. Benjamin can also be reached via electronic mail at

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On October 28, 1999, the State of Georgia, through the GAEPD, submitted an attainment demonstration for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS for the Atlanta nonattainment area for inclusion into the Georgia SIP. This submittal included a version of the low-sulfur/low-RVP fuel regulations that has subsequently been amended by the State, and submitted by the State to EPA in revised form in subsequent SIP revisions dated July 31, 2000, and August 21, 2001. The version submitted on August 21, 2001, which is the subject of this final rulemaking, is the “Gasoline Marketing Rule,” provided in Georgia's Rules for Air Quality Control, Chapter 391-3-1.02(2) (bbb).

On May 31, 2000, in support of its request for SIP approval of the State fuel regulations, GAEPD also submitted a demonstration that, in accordance with section 211(c)(4)(C) of the Act, the fuel control is necessary to achieve a NAAQS. On November 9, 2001, GAEPD submitted an updated “necessity” demonstration which reflected the revised motor vehicle emissions budget, the request for an attainment date extension from 2003 to 2004, and the revised Partnership for a Smog Free Georgia emissions calculations. Specifically, the Georgia “necessity” demonstration submittals contain data and analyses to support a finding under section 211(c)(4)(C) that the State's low-sulfur and low-RVP requirements are necessary for the Atlanta nonattainment area to achieve the ozone NAAQS. On December 11, 2001, (66 FR 63982) EPA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) to approve the fuel waiver request and fuel rule. That NPR provides a detailed description of this action and EPA's rationale for proposed approval. The public comment period for this action ended on January 25, 2002. No comments, adverse or otherwise, were received on EPA's proposal.

Final Action

EPA is approving Georgia's low-sulfur/low-RVP fuel program into the federally enforceable SIP because the fuel requirements are in accordance with the Act, are necessary for the Atlanta nonattainment area to achieve the 1-hour ozone NAAQS in a timely manner, and will supply some or all of the reductions needed to achieve the ozone NAAQS.

Administrative Requirements

Under Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993), this action is not a “significant regulatory action” and therefore is not subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget. For this reason, this action is also not subject to Executive Order 13211, “Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use” (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001). This action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and imposes no additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. Accordingly, the Administrator certifies that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S. C. 601 et seq.). Because this rule approves pre-existing requirements under state law and does not impose any additional enforceable duty beyond that required by state law, it does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-4).

This rule also does not have tribal implications because it will not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, 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 by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2001). This action also does not have Federalism implications because it does not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and 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 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999). This action merely approves a state rule implementing a Federal standard, and does not alter the relationship or the distribution of power and responsibilities established in the CAA. This rule also is not subject to Executive Order 13045 “Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks” (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997), because it is not economically significant.

In reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. In this context, in the absence of prior existing requirements for the State to use voluntary consensus standards (VCS), EPA has no authority to disapprove a SIP submission for failure to use VCS. It would thus be inconsistent with applicable law for EPA, when it reviews a SIP submission to use VCS in place of a SIP submission that otherwise satisfies the provisions of the CAA. Thus, the requirements of section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1195 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) do not apply. This rule does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Action of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the Small 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. EPA will submit a report containing this 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 the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by April 23, 2002. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this rule for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2)).Start Printed Page 8202

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List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

  • Environmental protection
  • Air pollution control
  • Hydrocarbons
  • Incorporation by reference
  • Intergovernmental relations
  • Ozone
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
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Dated: February 4, 2002.

A. Stanley Meiburg,

Acting Regional Administrator,

Region 4.

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Chapter I, title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, is amended as follows:

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1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows:

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

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Subpart L—Georgia

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2. Section 52.569 is removed and reserved.

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3. Section 52.570 is amended by:

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a. Adding in the table to paragraph (c) a new entry in numerical order for 391-3-1-.02(2)(bbb); and

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b. Adding two new entries 16 and 17 in numerical order to the table in paragraph (e).

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The additions read as follows:

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Identification of plan.
* * * * *

(c) * * *

EPA Approved Georgia Regulations

State citationTitle/subjectState effective dateEPA approval dateExplanation
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
391-3-1-.02(2)(bbb)Gasoline Marketing Rule07/18/012/22/02
*         *         *         *         *
* * * * *

(e) * * *

EPA Approved Georgia Nonregulatory Provisions

Name of nonregulatory SIP provisionApplicable geographic or nonattainment areaState submittal date/effective dateEPA approval date
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
16. Preemption Waiver Request for Low-RVP, Low-Sulfur Gasoline Under Air Quality Control Rule 391-3-1-.02(2)(bbb)Atlanta Metropolitan AreaMay 31, 2000February 22, 2002
17. Technical Amendment to the Georgia Fuel Waiver Request of May 31, 2000Atlanta Metropolitan AreaNovember 9, 2001February 22, 2002
* * * * *
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[FR Doc. 02-4142 Filed 2-21-02; 8:45 am]