[Federal Register Volume 64, Number 189 (Thursday, September 30, 1999)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 52654-52657]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 99-25422]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 52

[DC040-2016; FRL-6448-9]


Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; 
District of Columbia; GSA Central and West Heating Plants

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Direct final rule.

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SUMMARY: EPA is taking direct final action approving revisions to the 
District of Columbia State Implementation Plan (SIP). The revisions 
consist of portions of an

[[Page 52655]]

operating permit which reduce sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions 
from two steam-generating facilities located in the District of 
Columbia. The intent of this action is to approve, as SIP revisions, 
portions of the operating permit issued by the District of Columbia on 
October 17, 1997 to the General Services Administration (GSA) for its 
Central Heating and Refrigeration Plant and West Heating Plant in 
accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (the Act).

DATES: This rule is effective on November 29, 1999 without further 
notice, unless EPA receives adverse written comment by November 1, 
1999. If EPA receives such comments, it will publish a timely 
withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register and inform 
the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES: Written comments should be mailed to Walter Wilkie, Acting 
Chief, Technical Assessment Branch, Mailcode 3AP22, U.S. Environmental 
Protection Agency, Region III, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, 
Pennsylvania 19103. Copies of the documents relevant to this action are 
available for public inspection during normal business hours at the Air 
Protection Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region III, 
1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103; the Air and 
Radiation Docket and Information Center, U.S. Environmental Protection 
Agency, 401 M Street, SW, Washington, DC 20460; District of Columbia 
Department of Public Health, Air Quality Division, 51 N Street, N.E., 
Washington, DC 20002.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denis Lohman (215) 814-2192, or by e-
mail at lohman.denny@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

    On October 23, 1997, the District of Columbia submitted a formal 
revision to its SIP. The SIP revision consisted of an October 17, 1997 
operating permit issued by the District of Columbia to GSA for its 
Central Refrigeration and Heating Plant (CHRP) and West Heating Plant 
(WHP). On December 16, 1998, the District submitted an amendment 
intended to clarify the scope of its of October 23, 1997 submittal. The 
amendment clarified that the District is only requesting that portions 
of the operating permit be approved and incorporated into the SIP. EPA 
is approving all of the portions of the permit requested by the 
District in its December 16, 1998 submittal. While the other provisions 
of the operating permit are federally enforceable pursuant to Title V 
of the Act, certain SO2 provisions are being approved as SIP 
revisions because they are needed to ensure attainment of the annual 
National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) set for SO2.

II. Summary of SIP Revision

    The operating permit imposes emission limits for SO2 and 
establishes restrictions on fuel burning capabilities to minimize 
SO2 from the plants. The operating permit requires the 
combustion of natural gas at all times at GSA's CHRP and WHP. There is, 
however, a provision for the use of No. 2 ``on-road Diesel'' fuel with 
a maximum sulfur content of five hundredths weight percent 
(0.05%wt ) during periods of natural gas service 
interruption by the supplier. In addition to limiting the sulfur 
content of the fuel that may be combusted during periods of natural gas 
interruption, the permit also limits the total gallons per calendar 
year that may be combusted at each facility. These restrictions on fuel 
type and usage have significantly reduced the SO2 emissions 
from these plants to the point where such emissions presents a 
negligible potential for impact on the surrounding area. Under the 
existing SIP, the average annual SO2 emissions for CHRP and 
WHP were 523 and 626 tons per year, respectively, during the period of 
1980 to 1990, inclusively. The provisions of the operating permit, 
which are the subject of this SIP revision, restrict annual 
SO2 emissions to 17 tons per year at CHRP and 12 tons per 
year at WHP.
    The permit provisions being approved as SIP revisions also require 
GSA to report the necessary information to ensure compliance with the 
annual emission limits. The principle compliance determination method 
is the use of continuous emissions monitoring when combusting natural 
gas or No. 2 ``on-road Diesel'' fuel. In addition, the District 
requires fuel analysis or fuel certification substantiating the maximum 
hydrogen sulfide and weight percent sulfur of the gas or oil consumed. 
GSA must submit quarterly reports for each boiler at CHRP and WHP 
including; hours of service, types and quantities of fuel combusted, 
fuel composition and heat content, service interruptions and total tons 
of SO2 emitted on a monthly basis and on rolling 12 month 
basis. Monthly reports are to be prepared demonstrating GSA's 
maintenance of the NAAQS for SO2 in the vicinity of the two 
facilities. Sulfur-in-fuel reports are due each month detailing 
specific information about fuel oil, if any, that was burned during the 
month. The level of reporting detailed above provides adequate 
assurance that the compliance status of GSA can be quickly and 
accurately tracked at all times.
    EPA has determined that the portions of GSA's operating permit 
which the District of Columbia has requested be approved as SIP 
revisions serve to strengthen the District of Columbia SO2 
SIP, and EPA is therefore approving the District's request.
    EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because the 
Agency views this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipates no 
adverse comment. However, in the ``Proposed Rules'' section of today's 
Federal Register, EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve 
as the proposal to approve the District's SIP revision if adverse 
comments are filed. This rule will be effective on November 29, 1999 
without further notice unless EPA receives adverse comment by November 
1, 1999. If EPA receives adverse comment, EPA will publish a timely 
withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule 
will not take effect. EPA will address all public comments in a 
subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. EPA will not 
institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties 
interested in commenting must do so at this time.

III. Final Action

    EPA is approving, as a revision to the District of Columbia SIP, 
the District's December 16, 1998 submittal (amending its October 23, 
1997 submittal) consisting of portions of the operating permit issued 
by the District on October 17, 1997 to GSA for its Central and West 
Heating Plants.

IV. Administrative Requirements

A. Executive Order 12866

    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted this 
regulatory action from review under E.O. 12866, entitled ``Regulatory 
Planning and Review.''

B. Executive Order 12875

    Under E.O. 12875, EPA may not issue a regulation that is not 
required by statute and that creates a mandate upon a state, local, or 
tribal government, unless the Federal government provides the funds 
necessary to pay the direct compliance costs incurred by those 
governments. If EPA complies by consulting, E.O. requires EPA to 
provide to the Office of Management and Budget a description of the 
extent of EPA's prior consultation with representatives

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of affected state, local, and tribal governments, the nature of their 
concerns, copies of written communications from the governments, and a 
statement supporting the need to issue the regulation. In addition, 
E.O. 12875 requires EPA to develop an effective process permitting 
elected officials and other representatives of state, local, and tribal 
governments ``to provide meaningful and timely input in the development 
of regulatory proposals containing significant unfunded mandates.'' 
Today's rule does not create a mandate on state, local or tribal 
governments. The rule does not impose any enforceable duties on these 
entities. Accordingly, the requirements of section 1(a) of E.O. 12875 
do not apply to this rule.

C. Executive Order 13045

    E.O. 13045, entitled ``Protection of Children from Environmental 
Health Risks and Safety Risks'' (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997), applies 
to any rule that the EPA determines (1) is ``economically 
significant,'' as defined under E.O. 12866, and (2) the environmental 
health or safety risk addressed by the rule has a disproportionate 
effect on children. If the regulatory action meets both criteria, the 
Agency must evaluate the environmental health or safety effects of the 
planned rule on children and explain why the planned regulation is 
preferable to other potentially effective and reasonably feasible 
alternatives considered by the Agency.
    This final rule is not subject to E.O. 13045 because it is not an 
economically significant regulatory action as defined by E.O. 12866, 
and it does not address an environmental health or safety risk that 
would have a disproportionate effect on children.

D. Executive Order 13084

    Under E.O. 13084, EPA may not issue a regulation that is not 
required by statute, that significantly affects or uniquely affects the 
communities of Indian tribal governments, and that imposes substantial 
direct compliance costs on those communities, unless the Federal 
government provides the funds necessary to pay the direct compliance 
costs incurred by the tribal governments. If EPA complies by 
consulting, Executive Order 13084 requires EPA to provide to the Office 
of Management and Budget, in a separately identified section of the 
preamble to the rule, a description of the extent of EPA's prior 
consultation with representatives of affected tribal governments, a 
summary of the nature of their concerns, and a statement supporting the 
need to issue the regulation. In addition, Executive Order 13084 
requires EPA to develop an effective process permitting elected and 
other representatives of Indian tribal governments ``to provide 
meaningful and timely input in the development of regulatory policies 
on matters that significantly or uniquely affect their communities.'' 
Today's rule does not significantly or uniquely affect the communities 
of Indian tribal governments. This action does not involve or impose 
any requirements that affect Indian Tribes. Accordingly, the 
requirements of section 3(b) of E.O. 13084 do not apply to this rule.

E. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) generally requires an agency 
to conduct a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to 
notice and comment rulemaking requirements unless the agency certifies 
that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small 
businesses, small not-for-profit enterprises, and small governmental 
jurisdictions. This final rule will not have a significant impact on a 
substantial number of small entities because SIP approvals under 
section 110 and subchapter I, part D of the Clean Air Act does not 
create any new requirements but simply approve requirements that the 
State is already imposing. Therefore, because the Federal SIP approval 
does not create any new requirements, I certify that this action will 
not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. Moreover, due to the nature of the Federal-State relationship 
under the Clean Air Act, preparation of a flexibility analysis would 
constitute Federal inquiry into the economic reasonableness of state 
action. The Clean Air Act forbids EPA to base its actions concerning 
SIPs on such grounds. Union Electric Co. v. U.S. EPA, 427 U.S. 246, 
255-66 (1976); 42 U.S.C. 7410(a)(2).

F. Unfunded Mandates

    Under section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 
(``Unfunded Mandates Act''), signed into law on March 22, 1995, EPA 
must prepare a budgetary impact statement to accompany any proposed or 
final rule that includes a Federal mandate that may result in estimated 
annual costs to State, local, or tribal governments in the aggregate; 
or to private sector, of $100 million or more. Under section 205, EPA 
must select the most cost-effective and least burdensome alternative 
that achieves the objectives of the rule and is consistent with 
statutory requirements. Section 203 requires EPA to establish a plan 
for informing and advising any small governments that may be 
significantly or uniquely impacted by the rule.
    EPA has determined that the approval action promulgated does not 
include a Federal mandate that may result in estimated annual costs of 
$100 million or more to either State, local, or tribal governments in 
the aggregate, or to the private sector. This Federal action approves 
pre-existing requirements under State or local law, and imposes no new 
requirements. Accordingly, no additional costs to State, local, or 
tribal governments, or to the private sector, result from this action.

G. Submission to Congress and the Comptroller General

    The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally 
provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating 
the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, 
to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the 
United States. Section 804, however, exempts from section 801 the 
following types of rules: rules of particular applicability; rules 
relating to agency management or personnel; and rules of agency 
organization, procedure, or practice that do not substantially affect 
the rights or obligations of non-agency parties. 5 U.S.C. 804(3). EPA 
is not required to submit a rule report regarding today's action under 
section 801 because this is a rule of particular applicability 
pertaining only to the General Services Administration's (GSA) Central 
Heating and Refrigeration Plant and West Heating Plant located in the 
District of Columbia.

H. Petitions for Judicial Review

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for 
judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court 
of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by November 29, 1999. Filing a 
petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule, 
pertaining to GSA's operating permit for its Central and West heating 
plants, does not affect the finality of this rule for the purposes of 
judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for 
judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness 
of such rule or action. This action approving portions of the 
District's operating permit issued to GSA for its Central and West 
heating plants may not be challenged later in proceedings to

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enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by 
reference, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides.

    Dated: September 20, 1999.
W. Michael McCabe,
Regional Administrator, Region III.
    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

PART 52--[AMENDED]

    1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart J--District of Columbia

    2. In Section 52.470, the entry for GSA permit-to-operate fuel-
burning equipment in the ``EPA Approved District of Columbia Source-
specific requirements'' table in paragraph (d) is added and the entry 
``None'' is removed to read as follows:


Sec. 52.470  Identification of plan.

* * * * *
    (d) EPA-Approved District of Columbia Source-Specific Requirements

                         EPA-Approved District of Columbia Source-Specific Requirements
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        Name of Source            Permit number    State effective date    EPA approval date        Comments
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General Services                N/A--it is the     Oct 17, 1997.         Sept 30, 1999 [page    The following
 Administration Central          operating permit                         cite.].                portions of
 Heating and Refrigeration       issued to GSA by                                                GSA's operating
 Plant and West Heating Plant.   the District of                                                 permit are not
                                 Columbia on                                                     included in the
                                 October 17, 1997.                                               SIP: The
                                                                                                 portion of
                                                                                                 Condition 3
                                                                                                 referring to
                                                                                                 Table 1, Table
                                                                                                 1, Condition 4,
                                                                                                 Table 3, and
                                                                                                 Condition 17.
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[FR Doc. 99-25422 Filed 9-29-99; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-P