Category Archives: Air

Wind Energy Sailing Across the Great Plains

On March 6, 2017, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) reported that Iowa, Kansas, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota all sourced more than 20% of their electricity generation from wind power during 2016 based on its review of new data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). In the same article, AWEA reported that… Read More »

PA General Air Permits for Natural Gas Operations – A Future of More Delays

Back in January of this year I posted an article on this site that reviewed the PA DEP’s plans for initiating a new general air permit to address methane emissions from natural gas facilities.  This proposal called for an elimination of the existing Exemption 38 for future facilities and replacing it with a new GP-5A. … Read More »

EPA Risk Management Plan Rule Delayed

On Tuesday, March 14, 2017, EPA announced it would be delaying the effective date of the revised Clean Air Act 112(r) rule governing Risk Management Plan implementation and development from March 13, 2017 to June 19, 2017.  The rule is of concern to the regulated community, comprised of large industrial sources, because it represents enhanced… Read More »

PA DEP – A New General Permit for Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Operations

At the December meeting of the DEP’s Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee, representatives from the DEP’s Bureau of Air Quality presented the committee with some proposed changes they are planning to address methane emissions from natural gas operations.  Specifically, the DEP is proposing to revise its existing general permit program to regulate emissions from new… Read More »

OSHA’s Silica Exposure Rule Set to Impact Hydraulic Fracturing Operations

On March 25, 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) released new standards for workplace exposure to silica dust, providing the first revisions to these standards since 1971. This final rule addresses workplace exposure to respirable crystalline silica (“silica”) which is a mineral that is commonly found in everyday materials such as roads, buildings,… Read More »

Supreme Court Denies Ohio Appeal of PM2.5 Attainment Redesignation Vacatur

In 2011, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) determined that the Cincinnati-Hamilton metropolitan area in Ohio had attained national air quality standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM2.5), in part based on regional cap-and trade programs. EPA redesignated the area to “attainment” status. The Sierra Club appealed the redesignation because Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky, the three States… Read More »

Accidental Release Prevention Requirements: Risk Management Programs CAA 112(r)

EPA has circulated a pre-publication rule change to its CAA §112(r) Risk Management Planning program regulations at 40 CFR Part 68. These proposed revisions will result in changes to the accident prevention program requirements, as well as enhancement to the emergency response requirements, and improvements to the public availability of chemical hazard information. The comment… Read More »

The Rebirth of Chevron Deference

On November 10, 2015, Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden spoke at the D.C. Bar’s Administrative Law and Agency Practice Committee’s Harold Leventhal Lecture on the enduring nature of the Chevron Doctrine. See Remarks, http://www.justice.gov/opa/speech/assistant-attorney-general-john-c-cruden-delivers-remarks-enduring-nature-chevron. Assistant Attorney General Cruden’s remarks are timely, as his main focus was on the use of Chevron deference from an… Read More »

Proposed 2015 Ozone Transport Rule (“CSAPR Update”) – Industrial Sources

On November 16, 2015 EPA Administrator McCarthy signed the proposed CSAPR Update transport rule. The official publication in the Federal Register will be forth coming. There will be much to say about the proposal’s increased reductions and pollution control equipment operational requirements from the coal fired power generation industry, but it is well to take… Read More »

EPA Releases Clean Power Plan

On August 3, 2015, President Obama and EPA Administrator McCarthy released the agency’s Clean Power Plan, regulations designed to significantly reduce CO2 emissions from power plants, as well as promoting low-emitting power sources and energy efficiency. These sweeping new rules may revolutionize the nation’s power generation system, and will be challenged vigorously in federal court.… Read More »