Following up on its recent promise to evaluate all existing regulations and reduce regulatory burden, EPA held a public teleconference on April 24th to take ideas on reforming its air-related regulations. The call was scheduled for three hours, with each commenter limited to three minutes. The commenters essentially fell into two categories—environmental interest groups criticizing any attempts at what they view as a roll-back of important environmental protections, or businesses and industry groups citing specific regulations and guidance that should be reviewed and revised. For example, David Doniger of the Natural Resource Defense Council expressed support for EPA’s climate regulations and encouraged EPA to “do its job,” while Andrea Field of the Utility Air Regulatory Group sought specific review and reform of the CO2 standards for new power plants, the mandatory greenhouse gas reporting rule, the Cross-State Air Pollution (CSAPR) Update Rule, visibility regulations, and pre-construction permitting requirements. Other important rules mentioned by industry commenters included EPA’s methane standards for oil and gas production facilities, EPA’s national ambient air quality standards for ozone and particulate matter, the renewable fuels program, the maximum achievable control technology standards for industrial boilers, and EPA’s guidance on the use of dispersion modeling to assess air quality impacts. Written comments in response to EPA’s request are due May 15, 2017, although several commenters have already requested more time.
If you have any questions regarding the EPA teleconference, please contact Mack McGuffey at (404) 885-3698.