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Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, South Coast Air Quality Management District and Ventura County Air Pollution Control District

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve revisions to the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) and the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (VCAPCD) portions of the California State Implementation Plan (SIP). These revisions respectively concern volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from petroleum refinery coking operations, and sulfur dioxide (SO2) primary emissions from stationary combustion sources. We are approving local rules that regulate these emission sources under the Clean Air Act (CAA or the Act).

DATES:

This rule is effective on March 23, 2015 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse comments by February 19, 2015. If we receive such comments, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register to notify the public that this direct final rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments, identified by docket number EPA-R09-OAR-2014-0781, by one of the following methods:

1. Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions.

2. Email: steckel.andrew@epa.gov.

3. Mail or deliver: Andrew Steckel (Air-4), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, CA 94105-3901.

Instructions: All comments will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available on-line at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Information that you consider CBI or otherwise protected should be clearly identified as such and should not be submitted through www.regulations.gov or email. www.regulations.gov is an “anonymous access” system, and EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send email directly to EPA, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the public comment. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.Start Printed Page 2610

Docket: Generally, documents in the docket for this action are available electronically at www.regulations.gov and in hard copy at EPA Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, California 94105-3901. While all documents in the docket are listed at www.regulations.gov, some information may be publicly available only at the hard copy location (e.g., copyrighted material, large maps), and some may not be publicly available in either location (e.g., CBI). To inspect the hard copy materials, please schedule an appointment during normal business hours with the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

James Shears, EPA Region IX, (213) 244-1810, shears.james@epa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Throughout this document, “we,” “us,” and “our” refer to EPA.

Table of Contents

I. The State's Submittal

A. What rules did the State submit?

B. Are there other versions of these rules?

C. What is the purpose of the submitted rule revisions?

II. EPA's Evaluation and Action

A. How is EPA evaluating the rules?

B. Do the rules meet the evaluation criteria?

C. EPA Recommendations to Further Improve the Rules

D. Public Comment and Final Action

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

I. The State's Submittal

A. What rules did the State submit?

Table 1 lists the rules we are approving with the dates that they were adopted by the local air agencies and submitted by the California Air Resources Board.

Table 1—Submitted Rules

Local agencyRule No.Rule titleAdoptedSubmitted
SCAQMD1114Petroleum Refinery Coking Operations5/3/132/10/14
VCAPCD54Sulfur Compounds1/14/145/13/14

On May 5, 2014, EPA determined that the submittal for SCAQMD, Rule 1114, met the completeness criteria in 40 CFR part 51 Appendix V, which must be met before formal EPA review.

On July 18, 2014, EPA determined that the submittal for VCAPCD, Rule 54, met the completeness criteria in 40 CFR part 51 Appendix V, which must be met before formal EPA review.

B. Are there other versions of these rules?

There is not an earlier version of SCAQMD Rule 1114. We approved an earlier version of VCAPCD Rule 54 into the SIP on April 19, 2000 (65 FR 20913).

C. What is the purpose of the submitted rule revisions?

VOCs help produce ground-level ozone and smog, which harm human health and the environment. Section 110(a) of the CAA requires States to submit regulations that control VOC emissions. SCAQMD Rule 1114 addresses petroleum refinery coking operations and is designed to minimize VOC emissions generated during the delayed coking process. It requires that coke drums be depressurized to less than two psig prior to venting to atmosphere.

Current scientific evidence links short-term exposures to sulfur dioxide (SO2), ranging from 5 minutes to 24 hours, with an array of adverse respiratory effects including bronchoconstriction and increased asthma symptoms. Section 110(a) of the CAA requires States to submit regulations that control SO2 emissions. VCAPCD Rule 54 limits emissions of sulfur compounds to the atmosphere from fossil fuel combustion in Ventura. The rule adds a .075 ppm 1-hour SO2 facility property line concentration limit consistent with the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) promulgated nationally in 2010. EPA's technical support documents (TSDs) for SCAQMD and VCAPCD have more information about these various rules.

II. EPA's Evaluation and Action

A. How is EPA evaluating the rules?

40 CFR part 81 describes SCAQMD as regulating a non-attainment area classified as extreme for the 8-hour ozone NAAQS. VCAPCD is currently designated as being “better than the national standards” for the 1971 NAAQS for SO2. Therefore, VCAPCD does not need to implement RACT at this time, but it must comply with enforceability and other CAA requirements for SO2. SIP rules must be enforceable (see CAA section 110(a)(2), must not interfere with applicable requirements concerning attainment and reasonable further progress or other CAA requirements (see CAA section 110(l)), and must not modify certain SIP control requirements in non-attainment areas without ensuring equivalent or greater emissions reductions (see CAA section 193).

Guidance and policy documents that we use to evaluate enforceability and RACT requirements consistently include the following:

1. “State Implementation Plans; General Preamble for the Implementation of Title I of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990”, 57 FR 13498 (April 16, 1992); 57 FR 18070 (April 28, 1992).

2. “Issues Relating to VOC Regulation Cutpoints, Deficiencies, and Deviations”, EPA, May 25, 1988 (the Bluebook).

3. “Guidance Document for Correcting Common VOC & Other Rule Deficiencies”, EPA Region 9, August 21, 2001 (the Little Bluebook).

4. 40 CFR 60.103a, “Work Practice Standards”, EPA, July 1, 2011 edition.

5. Federal Register “Petroleum Refinery Sector Risk and Technology Review and New Source Petroleum Standards; Proposed Rule”, EPA, 79 FR 36879, June 30, 2014.

6. 40 CFR 50.17, “National Primary Ambient Air Quality Standards for Sulfur Oxides (Sulfur Dioxide), EPA, June 22, 2010.

7. Method 100.1, “Source Test Protocol for Determining Oxygen Corrected Pollutant Concentrations from Combustion Sources with High Stack Oxygen Content Based on Carbon Dioxide Emissions”, SCAQMD, March 3, 2011.

B. Do the rules meet the evaluation criteria?

We believe these rules are consistent with the relevant policy and guidance regarding enforceability, RACT, and SIP relaxations. The respective TSDs have more information on our evaluation.

C. EPA Recommendations to Further Improve the Rules

We have no recommendations for SCAQMD Rule 1114 at this time. Our TSD for Rule 54 describes an additional revision that we recommend for the next time VCAPCD modifies the rule.Start Printed Page 2611

D. Public Comment and Final Action

As authorized in section 110(k)(3) of the Act, EPA is fully approving the submitted rules because we believe they fulfill all relevant requirements. We do not think anyone will object to this approval, so we are finalizing it without proposing it in advance. However, in the Proposed Rules section of this Federal Register, we are simultaneously proposing approval of the same submitted rules. If we receive adverse comments by February 19, 2015, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register to notify the public that the direct final approval will not take effect and we will address the comments in a subsequent final action based on the proposal. If we do not receive timely adverse comments, the direct final approval will be effective without further notice on March 23, 2015. This will incorporate these rules into the federally enforceable SIP.

Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

Under the Clean Air Act, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve State choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the Clean Air Act. Accordingly, this action merely approves State law as meeting Federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by State law. For that reason, this action:

  • Is not a “significant regulatory action” subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993);
  • does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);
  • is certified as not having a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
  • does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);
  • does not have Federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
  • is not an economically significant regulatory action based on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997);
  • is not a significant regulatory action subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
  • is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent with the Clean Air Act; and
  • does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to address disproportionate human health or environmental effects with practical, appropriate, and legally permissible methods under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because the SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country located in the State, and EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

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 action 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 Clean Air Act, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by March 23, 2015. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action 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. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the Proposed Rules section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements (see section 307(b)(2)).

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List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

  • Environmental protection
  • Air pollution control
  • Carbon monoxide
  • Incorporation by reference
  • Intergovernmental relations
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
  • Volatile organic compounds
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Dated: December 2, 2014.

Jared Blumenfeld,

Regional Administrator, Region IX.

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Part 52, Chapter I, Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as follows:

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PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS

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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 F—California

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2. Section 52.220 is amended by adding paragraphs (c)(441)(i)(C) and (c)(442)(i)(C) to read as follows:

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Identification of plan.
* * * * *

(c) * * *

(441) * * *

(i) * * *

(C) Ventura County Air Pollution Control District.

(1) Rule 54, “Sulfur Compounds,” revised on January 14, 2014.

(442) * * *

(i) * * *

(C) South Coast Air Quality Management District.

(1) Rule 1114, “Petroleum Refinery Coking Operations,” adopted on May 3, 2013.

* * * * *
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[FR Doc. 2015-00643 Filed 1-16-15; 8:45 am]

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