EPA implements changes to CSAPR

The EPA has made slight adjustments to the Cross State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR). The changes reflect new information with technical merit that was brought to the EPA by stakeholders from a small number of units after the final CSAPR was published. The changes were presented in the form of two different rules, the CSAPR Final Revisions Rule and the CSAPR Direct Final Rule.

The EPA hopes the additional rules will enhance compliance flexibility and smooth the transition from the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR) programs to the CSAPR programs.

The Final Revisions Rule revises state budgets for Florida, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Texas, and Wisconsin and new unit set-asides for Arkansas and Texas. This action revises unit-level allocations for Alabama, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee to better account for utility consent decrees. This rule also amends the assurance penalty provisions for all states within the programs so they start in 2014 instead of 2012, helping to increase the opportunity for market-based compliance options in the early years of the program. Finally, thisl rule revises typographical errors in the final CSAPR.

The rules has been submitted by the EPA for publication in the Federal Register.

CSAPR is still under a stay, which was granted by the U.S. District Court of Appeals at the end of 2011. Once the Court has reviewed briefs supporting or contradicting the rule, it is expected that a hearing may be held in April and a decision with the finalized rule could come three to four months after the arguments, said Todd Palmer, an environmental lawyer with Michael Best & Friedrich LLP.

The revisions to the rule can be found here: http://1.usa.gov/y2CYEq and http://1.usa.gov/xbjxMp.

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