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Air Plan Approval; Connecticut; Infrastructure State Implementation Plan Requirements for the 2015 Ozone Standard

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).


Final rule.


The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving most of the elements of a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision submitted by the State of Connecticut that addresses the infrastructure requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act), excluding the interstate transport provisions, for the 2015 ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). We are conditionally approving several elements of Connecticut's SIP revision regarding air quality modeling requirements.

The infrastructure requirements are designed to ensure that the structural Start Printed Page 50954components of each state's air-quality management program, including provisions prohibiting emissions that will have certain adverse air-quality effects in other states, are adequate to meet the state's responsibilities under the CAA. This action is being taken in accordance with the Clean Air Act.


This rule is effective on September 18, 2020.


EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R01-OAR-2020-0223. All documents in the docket are listed on the website. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI 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 at or at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Region 1 Regional Office, Air and Radiation Division, 5 Post Office Square—Suite 100, Boston, MA. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the contact 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 legal holidays and facility closures due to COVID-19.

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Alison C. Simcox, Air Quality Branch, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA Region 1, 5 Post Office Square—Suite 100, (Mail code 05-2), Boston, MA 02109-3912, tel. (617) 918-1684, email

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Throughout this document whenever “we,” “us,” or “our” is used, we mean EPA.

Table of Contents

I. Background and Purpose

II. Final Action

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

I. Background and Purpose

On May 29, 2020, EPA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to approve a Connecticut SIP revision addressing the infrastructure requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act)—excluding the interstate transport provisions—for the 2015 ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). Connecticut submitted the formal SIP revision on September 7, 2018. The rationale for EPA's proposed action is given in the NPRM and will not be restated here. EPA received no public comments on the NPRM.

II. Final Action

EPA is approving most of the elements of Connecticut's September 7, 2018, infrastructure SIP submission for the 2015 ozone NAAQS)—excluding section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) (i.e., the Good Neighbor” or “transport” provisions)—as a revision to the Connecticut SIP.

In addition, EPA is conditionally approving section 110(a)(2)(K) (Air quality modeling and data) as well as the PSD-related requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), 110(a)(2)(C), and 110(a)(2)(J). The State must submit to EPA by August 19, 2021 the necessary revisions to RCSA section 22a-174-3a(i) needed to fully approve these elements.

If the State fails to do so, this approval will become a disapproval on that date. EPA will notify the State by letter that this action has occurred. At that time, this commitment will no longer be a part of the approved Connecticut SIP. EPA subsequently will publish a notice in the notice section of the Federal Register notifying the public that the conditional approval automatically converted to a disapproval. If the State meets its commitment, within the applicable time frame, the conditionally approved submission will remain a part of the SIP until EPA takes final action approving or disapproving the necessary SIP revision. If EPA disapproves the new submittal, the conditionally approved sections 110(a)(2)(K) and the PSD-related requirements of sections 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), 110(a)(2)(C), and 110(a)(2)(J) will also be disapproved at that time. If EPA approves the submittal, sections 110(a)(2)(K) and the PSD-related requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), 110(a)(2)(C), and 110(a)(2)(J) will be fully approved in their entirety and replace the conditionally approved elements in the SIP.

If the conditional approval is converted to a disapproval, such action will trigger EPA's authority to impose sanctions under section 110(m) of the CAA at the time EPA issues the final disapproval or on the date the State fails to meet its commitment. In the latter case, EPA will notify the State by letter that the conditional approval has been converted to a disapproval and that EPA's sanctions authority has been triggered. In addition, the final disapproval triggers the Federal implementation plan (FIP) requirement under section 110(c).

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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);
  • Is not an Executive Order 13771 regulatory action because this action is not significant under Executive Order 12866;
  • 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, 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 Start Printed Page 50955or 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 and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

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 October 19, 2020. 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
  • Carbon monoxide
  • Incorporation by reference
  • Intergovernmental relations
  • Lead
  • Nitrogen dioxide
  • Ozone
  • Particulate matter
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirements
  • Sulfur oxides
  • Volatile organic compounds
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Dated: July 20, 2020.

Dennis Deziel,

Regional Administrator, EPA Region 1.

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For the reasons stated in the preamble, the EPA amends Part 52 of chapter I, title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations 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 H—Connecticut

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2. Section 52.370 is amended by adding paragraph (c) (123) to read as follows:

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Identification of plan
* * * * *

(c) * * *

(123) Revisions to the State Implementation Plan submitted by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection on September 7, 2018.

(i) [Reserved]

(ii) Additional materials.

(A) The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection document, “Connecticut State Implementation Plan—Clean Air Act Section 110(a) Infrastructure Elements for the 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards,” Final, September 7, 2018.

(B) [Reserved]

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3. Section 52.386 is amended by adding paragraph (e) to read as follows:

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Section 110(a)(2) infrastructure requirements.
* * * * *

(e) The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection submitted an infrastructure SIP for the 2015 ozone NAAQS on September 7, 2018. This infrastructure SIP is approved, with the exception of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), which will be addressed in a future rulemaking, and sections 110(a)(2)(K) and the PSD-related requirements of sections 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), 110(a)(2)(C), and 110(a)(2)(J), which are conditionally approved.

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[FR Doc. 2020-16010 Filed 8-18-20; 8:45 am]