[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 88 (Thursday, May 7, 2015)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 26210-26212]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-10629]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 52

[EPA-HQ-OAR-2015-0071; FRL-9926-97-OAR]
RIN 2060-AS57


Prevention of Significant Deterioration Permitting for Greenhouse 
Gases: Providing Option for Rescission of EPA-Issued Tailoring Rule 
Step 2 Prevention of Significant Deterioration Permits

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to 
amend the federal Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) program 
regulations to allow for rescission of certain PSD permits issued by 
the EPA and delegated reviewing authorities under Step 2 of the 
Prevention of Significant Deterioration and Title V Greenhouse Gas 
(GHG) Tailoring Rule (Tailoring Rule). We are proposing to take this 
action in order to provide a mechanism for the EPA and delegated 
reviewing authorities to rescind PSD permits that are no longer 
required in light of the United States (U.S.) Supreme Court's decision 
in Utility Air Regulatory Group (UARG) v. EPA and the amended appeals 
court judgment in Coalition for Responsible Regulation (Coalition) v. 
EPA, vacating that rule. These decisions determined that Step 2 of the 
Tailoring

[[Page 26211]]

Rule was not required by the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) and vacated the 
EPA regulations implementing Step 2. When effective, this action would 
authorize the EPA and delegated reviewing authorities to rescind Step 2 
GHG PSD permits in response to requests from applicants who can 
demonstrate that they are eligible for permit rescission. In the 
``Rules and Regulations'' section of this Federal Register, we are 
amending the federal PSD program regulations as a direct final rule 
without a prior proposed rule. If we receive no adverse comment in 
response to the direct final rule, we will not take further action on 
this proposed rule.

DATES: Written comments must be received by June 8, 2015.
    Public Hearing: If anyone contacts the EPA by May 18, 2015, 
requesting to speak at a public hearing on this action, the EPA will 
hold a public hearing on May 22, 2015 in Research Triangle Park, North 
Carolina. The EPA will not hold a hearing if one is not requested. 
Please check the EPA's Web page at http://www.epa.gov/nsr on May 19, 
2015 for the announcement of whether the hearing will be held.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-
OAR-2015-0071, by mail to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA 
Docket Center, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., 
Washington, DC 20460. Comments may also be submitted electronically or 
through hand delivery/courier by following the detailed instructions in 
the ADDRESSES section of the direct final rule located in the rules 
section of this Federal Register.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mrs. Jessica Monta[ntilde]ez, U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Air Quality Planning and 
Standards, Air Quality Planning Division, (C504-03), Research Triangle 
Park, NC 27711, telephone number (919) 541-3407, email at 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. What are the details for the potential public hearing?

    If there is a public hearing, it will be held at the EPA, Building 
C, 109 T.W. Alexander Drive, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, 
27709; the room number will be announced on the NSR Web site at http://www.epa.gov/nsr. If requested, the hearing will provide interested 
parties the opportunity to present data, views or arguments concerning 
this action. The EPA will make every effort to accommodate all speakers 
who arrive and register. Because this hearing will be held at U.S. 
government facilities, individuals planning to attend the hearing 
should be prepared to show valid picture identification to the security 
staff in order to gain access to the meeting room. Please note that the 
REAL ID Act, passed by Congress in 2005, established new requirements 
for entering federal facilities. These requirements took effect July 
21, 2014. If your driver's license is issued by American Samoa, 
Arizona, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire or New York, 
you must present an additional form of identification to enter the 
federal buildings where the public hearings will be held. Acceptable 
alternative forms of identification include: federal employee badges, 
passports, enhanced driver's licenses and military identification 
cards. For additional information for the status of your state 
regarding REAL ID, go to http://www.dhs.gov/real-id-enforcement-brief. 
In addition, you will need to obtain a property pass for any personal 
belongings you bring with you. Upon leaving the building, you will be 
required to return this property pass to the security desk. No large 
signs will be allowed in the building, cameras may only be used outside 
of the building and demonstrations will not be allowed on federal 
property for security reasons. If held, the public hearing will begin 
at 10:00 a.m. and continue until 5:00 p.m., if necessary, depending on 
the number of speakers. The EPA may end the hearing early if all 
registered speakers have had an opportunity to speak, but no earlier 
than 2:00 p.m. Persons wishing to present oral testimony that have not 
made arrangements in advance should register by 2:00 p.m. the day of 
the hearing. Oral testimony will be limited to 5 minutes per commenter. 
The EPA encourages commenters to provide written versions of their oral 
testimonies either electronically (on computer disk or CD-ROM) or in 
paper copy. Verbatim transcripts and written statements will be 
included in the rulemaking docket.
    If you want to request a hearing and present oral testimony at the 
hearing, you should notify, on or before May 18, 2015, Ms. Pamela Long, 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Air Quality Planning 
and Standards, Air Quality Policy Division, C504-01, Research Triangle 
Park, NC 27711, telephone (919) 541-0641, email [email protected]. The 
hearing will be strictly limited to the subject matter of the proposal, 
the scope of which is discussed below. Any member of the public may 
file a written comment by the close of the comment period. Written 
comments should be submitted to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2015-0071 at 
the addresses given above for submittal of comments. If a hearing is 
held, the hearing schedule, including the list of speakers, will be 
posted on the EPA's Web page at http://www.epa.gov/nsr. A verbatim 
transcript of the hearing, if held, and written comments will be made 
available for copying during normal working hours at the EPA Docket 
Center address given above for inspection of documents.

II. Why is the EPA issuing this proposed rule?

    The EPA is proposing to take action to amend the federal PSD 
program regulation at 40 CFR 52.21 to allow existing PSD permits that 
were issued under Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule \1\ for GHGs to be 
rescinded. This proposed action narrowly amends the permit rescission 
provisions in the federal PSD regulations found in 40 CFR 52.21(w) to 
allow for the rescission of EPA-issued PSD permits \2\ that were issued 
under Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule permitting regulations.
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    \1\ Prevention of Significant Deterioration and Title V 
Greenhouse Gas Tailoring Rule (75 FR 31514, June 3, 2010); 40 CFR 
52.21(b)(49)(v).
    \2\ The terms ``EPA-issued PSD permits that were issued under 
Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule'' and ``EPA-issued Step 2 PSD permits'' 
both refer to PSD permits issued by the EPA as well as by delegated 
reviewing authorities under Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule.
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    The U.S. Supreme Court determined the permitting requirements under 
Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule to be invalid in UARG v. EPA, 134 S. Ct. 
2427 (2014). The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part an 
earlier decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the District 
of Columbia Circuit (D.C. Circuit) in Coalition for Responsible 
Regulation v. EPA, 684 F.3d 102 (D.C. Cir. 2012). In further 
proceedings upon consideration of the Supreme Court decision, the D.C. 
Circuit amended its judgment in the Coalition case. The Amended 
Judgment vacated particular provisions of the EPA's regulations 
implementing Step 2 of the Tailoring Rule.
    This proposed action does not itself rescind any permits; it only 
proposes the regulatory mechanism through which the EPA could then 
rescind, upon request of a source, an EPA-issued Step 2 PSD permit 
consistent with the U.S. Supreme Court decision and the amended 
judgment of the D.C. Circuit. Furthermore, we have published a direct 
final rule amending these federal PSD program regulations in the 
``Rules and Regulations'' section of this Federal Register because we 
view this as a non-controversial amendment and anticipate

[[Page 26212]]

no adverse comment. We have explained our reasons for this action in 
the preamble to the direct final rule.
    If we receive no adverse comment, we will not take further action 
on this proposed rule. If the EPA receives adverse comment in response 
to the direct final rule, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the 
Federal Register informing the public that the direct final rule will 
not take effect. In that case, we would address all public comments in 
any subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule.
    We do not intend to institute a second comment period on this 
action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. 
For further information about commenting on this rule, please see the 
information provided in the ADDRESSES section of this document.
    The regulatory text for the proposal is identical to that for the 
direct final rule published in the ``Rules and Regulations'' section of 
this Federal Register. For further supplementary information, the 
detailed rationale for the proposal and the regulatory revisions, see 
the direct final rule published in a separate part of this Federal 
Register.
    Neither this rule or direct final rule address any issues 
concerning the federal PSD permit rescission regulations at 40 CFR 
52.21(w) that are not related to the Supreme Court decision in UARG v. 
EPA and the amended judgment of the D.C. Circuit. The EPA is developing 
a separate rulemaking action that will provide an opportunity for the 
public to comment on others circumstances where 40 CFR 52.21(w) may 
limit the ability to rescind PSD permits that are no longer necessary.

III. Does this action apply to me?

    The entities potentially affected by this rule include new and 
modified stationary sources that were required to obtain an EPA-issued 
Step 2 PSD permit under the federal PSD regulations found at 40 CFR 
52.21 solely because the source or a modification of the source was 
expected to emit or increase GHG emissions over the applicable 
thresholds. This includes (1) sources classified as major for PSD 
purposes solely on the basis of their potential GHG emissions; and (2) 
sources emitting major amounts of other pollutants that experienced a 
modification resulting in an increase of only greenhouse gas emission 
above the applicable levels in the EPA regulations. Entities affected 
by this rule may also include state or local reviewing authorities that 
have been delegated federal authority to implement the federal PSD 
regulations under 40 CFR 52.21(u) and that have issued Step 2 PSD 
permits to sources within their jurisdiction. This rule does not 
address the requirements for approval of a PSD program into a state 
implementation plan (40 CFR 51.166) or the rescission of PSD permits 
issued by states and local programs with such approved programs. 
Stationary sources with questions on the PSD permitting obligations 
arising from Step 2 PSD permits issued by state or local reviewing 
authorities under the permitting programs approved into state 
implementation plans should review the governing statutory provisions 
and provisions in the applicable approved state or local permitting 
program to determine how to address any Step 2 PSD permitting issues 
and consult with the EPA as necessary.

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, 
Greenhouse gases, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental 
relations, Lead, National ambient air quality standards, New source 
review, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Permit 
rescissions, Preconstruction permitting, Sulfur oxides, Tailoring rule, 
Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: April 30, 2015.
Gina McCarthy,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2015-10629 Filed 5-6-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 6560-50-P