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EPA Issues Next Step for State Greenhouse Gas Permitting Programs

State/EPA efforts will ensure a smooth transition

WASHINGTON - Working with the states, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is moving forward with its plan to call on certain states to update their Clean Air Act implementation plans to cover greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These changes will ensure that beginning in January 2011 the largest industrial GHG emissions sources can receive permits. This action is part of EPA's common sense approach to GHG permitting outlined in the spring 2010 tailoring rule.

EPA has identified 13 states that need to make changes to their plans, allowing them to issue permits that include GHG emissions. These states include: Ariz., Ark., Calif., Conn., Fla., Idaho, Kan., Ky., Neb., Nev., Ore., Texas, and Wyo.
States are best-suited to issue permits to sources of GHG emissions and have long-standing experience working together with industrial facilities. The Clean Air Act requires states to develop EPA approved implementation plans that include requirements for issuing air permits. When federal permitting requirements change, as they did after EPA finalized the GHG tailoring rule, states may need to modify these plans.

EPA and the states have worked closely to ensure a smooth transition to GHG permitting. The agency will continue to work with the affected states to help them develop, submit, and obtain approval of the necessary revisions that will enable all states to issue air permits to GHG emission sources.    

In January 2011, industries that are large emitters of GHGs, and are planning to build new facilities or make major modifications to existing ones, will work with permitting authorities to identify and implement the most efficient control technologies to minimize their GHGs. This includes the nation's largest GHG emitters, such as power plants, refineries and cement production facilities. Emissions from small sources, such as farms and restaurants are not covered by these GHG permitting requirements.

More information: http://www.epa.gov/nsr

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