[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 93 (Monday, May 15, 2006)]
[Pages 28023-28024]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-7340]



[FRL-8170-1; Docket No. EPA-HQ-ORD-2006-0260]

Science Assessment for Sulfur Oxides

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice; Call for Information.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is undertaking 
to update and revise, where appropriate, the air quality criteria for 
sulfur oxides (SO\x\), last addressed in EPA/600/FP-93/002, 
``Supplement to the Second Addendum (1986) to Air Quality Criteria for 
Particulate Matter and Sulfur Oxides (1982): Assessment of New Findings 
on Sulfur Dioxide Acute Exposure Health Effects in Asthmatic 
Individuals,'' published in August 1994 by the Office of Research and 
Development, National Center for Environmental Assessment. Interested 
parties are invited to assist the EPA in developing and refining the 
scientific information base for updating this assessment of scientific 
information for sulfur oxides by submitting research studies that have 
been published, accepted for publication, or presented at a public 
scientific meeting. Areas where additional new information will be 
particularly useful to EPA for this project are described in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.

DATES: All materials submitted under this call for information should 
be received on or before June 15, 2006.

ADDRESSES: Submit materials, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-ORD-
2006-0260, by one of the following methods:
     http://www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line 
instructions for submitting comments.
     E-mail: [email protected].
     Fax: 202-566-1753; Office of Environmental Information 
(OEI) Docket in the Headquarters EPA Docket Center.
     Mail: Office of Environmental Information (OEI) Docket 
(Mail Code 2822T), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 
Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460.
     Hand Delivery: The Office of Environmental Information 
(OEI) Docket is located in the EPA Headquarters Docket Center, Room 
B102 EPA West Building, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC. 
The EPA Docket Center Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 
4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The 
telephone number for the public Reading Room is 202-566-1744, and the 
telephone number for the OEI Docket is 202-566-1752. Such deliveries 
are only accepted during the Docket's normal hours of operation, and 
special arrangements should be made for deliveries of boxed 
    If you provide information in writing, please submit one unbound 
original, with pages numbered consecutively, and three copies. For 
attachments, provide an index, number pages consecutively with the main 
text, and submit an unbound original and three copies.
    Instructions: Direct your materials to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-ORD-
2006-0260. It is EPA's policy to include all submitted materials in the 
public docket without change and to make the materials available online 
at http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 
provided, unless the included information is claimed as Confidential 
Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is 
restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to 
be CBI or otherwise protected through http://

[[Page 28024]]

www.regulations.gov or e-mail. The http://www.regulations.gov Web site 
is an ``anonymous access'' system, which means EPA will not know your 
identity or contact information unless you provide it within the 
submitted material. If you submit information directly to EPA by e-mail 
without going through http://www.regulations.gov, your e-mail address 
will be automatically captured and included as part of the information 
that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. 
If you submit materials electronically, EPA recommends that you include 
your name and other contact information with any disk or CD-ROM you 
submit. If EPA cannot read your submitted material due to technical 
difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be 
able to consider your submission. Electronic files should avoid the use 
of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any 
defects or viruses. For additional information about EPA's public 
docket visit the EPA Docket Center homepage at http://www.epa.gov/epahome/dockets.htm.
    Docket: Documents in the docket are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some 
information is not publicly available, e.g., CBI or other information 
whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such 
as copyrighted material, is publicly available only in hard copy. 
Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically 
in http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the OEI Docket in the 
EPA HQ Docket Center.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For technical information, contact 
Mary Ross, facsimile: 919-541-1818 or e-mail: [email protected].


A. Does This Action Apply to Me?

    Section 108(a) of the Clean Air Act directs the Administrator to 
identify certain pollutants that ``may reasonably be anticipated to 
endanger public health and welfare'' and to issue air quality criteria 
for them. These air quality criteria are to ``accurately reflect the 
latest scientific knowledge useful in indicating the kind and extent of 
all identifiable effects on public health or welfare which may be 
expected from the presence of [a] pollutant in the ambient air * * *.'' 
Under section 109 of the Act, EPA is then to establish National Ambient 
Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for each pollutant for which EPA has 
issued criteria. Section 109(d) of the Act subsequently requires 
periodic review and, if appropriate, revision of existing air quality 
criteria to reflect advances in scientific knowledge on the effects of 
the pollutant on public health and welfare. EPA is also to revise the 
NAAQS, if appropriate, based on the revised criteria.
    SOX are one of six principal (or ``criteria'') 
pollutants for which EPA has established national ambient air quality 
standards (NAAQS). Periodically, EPA reviews the scientific basis for 
these standards and prepares a science assessment document 
(historically referred to as a ``criteria document''). The science 
assessment provides the scientific basis for additional technical and 
policy assessments that form the basis for EPA decisions on the 
adequacy of a current NAAQS and the appropriateness of new or revised 
standards. One of the first steps in this process is to announce the 
beginning of this periodic NAAQS review and the start of the 
development of the science assessment by requesting the public to 
submit scientific literature that they want to bring to the attention 
of the Agency. The Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC), a 
review committee of the EPA's Science Advisory Board (SAB), is mandated 
by the Clean Air Act with performing an independent expert scientific 
review of the air quality criteria. This involves review of draft(s) of 
EPA's science assessment document. As this process proceeds, the public 
will have opportunities to review and comment on draft(s) of the 
science assessment document for SOX. These opportunities 
will also be announced in the Federal Register.

B. What Should I Consider as I Prepare Materials for Submission to EPA?

    Since completion of the 1994 ``Supplement to the Second Addendum 
(1986) to Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter and Sulfur Oxides 
(1982): Assessment of New Findings on Sulfur Dioxide Acute Exposure 
Health Effects in Asthmatic Individuals,'' EPA has continued to follow 
the scientific research on SOX exposure and its effects on 
public health and the environment and has gathered appropriate studies. 
The Agency is particularly interested in additional new information 
concerning: (1) Atmospheric science aspects (e.g., sources , emissions, 
atmospheric transformation and transport, air quality concentrations, 
patterns and trends); (2) exposure and dosimetry aspects; (3) health 
effects aspects, including information derived from human and animal 
toxicological studies of SO2 and transformation products 
(e.g. sulfates, sulfuric acid); and (4) ecological effects of 
SO2 and transformation products, such as those arising from 
wet and dry deposition of sulfates and/or sulfuric acid. These and 
other selected literature relevant to a review of the NAAQS for sulfur 
oxides will be assessed in the forthcoming revised science assessment 
for SOX. One or more drafts of the science assessment 
document for SOX are expected to be made available by EPA 
for public comment and CASAC review. After this call for information, 
other opportunities for submission of new peer-reviewed papers 
(published or in-press) will be possible as part of public comment on 
the draft documents that will be reviewed by CASAC.

    Dated: May 3, 2006.
Peter W. Preuss,
Director, National Center for Environmental Assessment.
[FR Doc. E6-7340 Filed 5-12-06; 8:45 am]