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Air Quality Plan; Georgia; Infrastructure Requirements for the 2012 PM2.5

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve a portion of the State Implementation Plan (SIP) submission, submitted by the State of Georgia, through the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Environmental Protection Division, on December 14, 2015, to demonstrate that the State meets the infrastructure requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) for the 2012 annual fine particulate matter (PM2.5) national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS). The CAA requires that each state adopt and submit a SIP for the implementation, maintenance and enforcement of each NAAQS promulgated by EPA, which is commonly referred to as an “infrastructure SIP submission.” Georgia certified that its SIP contains provisions that ensure the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS is implemented, enforced, and maintained in Georgia. EPA is approving portions of Georgia's infrastructure SIP submission, provided to EPA on December 14, 2015, as satisfying certain required infrastructure elements for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS.

DATES:

This rule will be effective December 21, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2014-0425. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically through www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding federal holidays.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Tiereny Bell, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Ms. Bell can be reached via electronic mail at bell.tiereny@epa.gov or via telephone at (404) 562-9088.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background and Overview

On December 14, 2012, EPA promulgated a revised primary annual PM2.5 NAAQS. The standard was strengthened from 15.0 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m3) to 12.0 μg/m3. See 78 FR 3086 (January 15, 2013). Pursuant to section 110(a)(1) of the CAA, states are required to submit SIPs meeting the applicable requirements of section 110(a)(2) within three years after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS or within such shorter period as EPA may prescribe. Section 110(a)(2) requires states to address basic SIP elements such as requirements for monitoring, basic program requirements and legal authority that are designed to assure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS. States were required to submit such SIPs for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS to EPA no later than December 14, 2015.

In a proposed rulemaking published on August 23, 2016 (81 FR 57544), EPA proposed to approve portions of Georgia's December 14, 2015, SIP submission for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS, with the exception of the interstate transport requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) and (II) (prongs 1, 2, and 4), for which EPA did not propose any action. On July 11, 2016, EPA published a proposed rule related to the prong 4 element of Georgia's December 14, 2015, SIP submission for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. See 81 FR 44831. EPA will consider final action on the prong 4 element of Georgia's March 25, 2013, SIP submission for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS through a separate rulemaking. With respect to the interstate transport requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) (prongs 1 and 2), EPA is considering this portion of Georgia's December 14, 2015, submission through a separate rulemaking. The details of Georgia's submission and the rationale for EPA's actions for this final rule are explained in the August 23, 2016, proposed rulemaking. Comments on the proposed rulemaking were due on or before September 22, 2016. EPA received no adverse comments.

II. Final Action

EPA is taking final action to approve Georgia's infrastructure submission submitted on December 14, 2015, for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS for the infrastructure SIP requirements, with the exception of the interstate transport requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) and (II) (prongs 1, 2 and 4). EPA is taking final action to approve all other elements of Georgia's infrastructure SIP submissions for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS because the submission is consistent with section 110 of the CAA.

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission Start Printed Page 83157that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable federal regulations. See 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 CAA. 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);
  • 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 CAA; and
  • Does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

In addition, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), nor will it 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 CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by January 20, 2017. 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. 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
  • Incorporation by reference
  • Intergovernmental relations
  • Particulate matter
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
  • Volatile organic compounds
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Dated: November 3, 2016.

Heather McTeer Toney,

Regional Administrator, Region 4.

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40 CFR part 52 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 L—Georgia

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2. In § 52.570, the table in paragraph (e) is amended by adding the entry “110(a)(1) and (2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2012 Annual PM 2.5 NAAQS” at the end of the table to read as follows:

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Identification of plan.
* * * * *

(e) * * *

EPA-Approved Georgia Non-Regulatory Provisions

Name of nonregulatory SIP provisionApplicable geographic or nonattainment areaState submittal date/effective dateEPA approval dateExplanation
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
110(a)(1) and (2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQSGeorgia12/14/201511/21/2016, [insert Federal Register citation]With the exception of sections 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) and (II) (prongs 1, 2 and 4).
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[FR Doc. 2016-27857 Filed 11-18-16; 8:45 am]

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