[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 49 (Tuesday, March 13, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 14712-14715]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-6030]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 52

[EPA-R01-OAR-2012-0076; A-1-FRL-9646-2]


Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; 
Massachusetts; Determination of Attainment of the 1997 Ozone Standard 
for the Eastern Massachusetts Nonattainment Area

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: The EPA is proposing two separate and independent 
determinations regarding the Boston-Lawrence-Worcester (Eastern 
Massachusetts) moderate 1997 8-hour ozone nonattainment area. First, 
based on complete, quality-assured and certified air monitoring data 
for 2007-2009, EPA is proposing to determine that the Eastern 
Massachusetts nonattainment area attained the 1997 8-hour National 
Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone as of the area's 
applicable attainment date, June 15, 2010. Second, EPA is proposing to 
determine that Eastern Massachusetts has attained the 1997 8-hour ozone 
NAAQS, based upon complete, quality-assured and certified ambient air 
monitoring data that show the area monitored attainment of the 1997 8-
hour ozone NAAQS for the 2008-2010 and 2009-2011 monitoring periods. If 
this latter proposed determination is made final, under the provisions 
of EPA's ozone implementation rule, the requirements for this area to 
submit an attainment demonstration, a reasonable further progress plan, 
contingency measures, and other planning State Implementation Plans 
related to attainment of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS shall be suspended 
for so long as the area continues to attain the 1997 ozone NAAQS. EPA 
is proposing these determinations under the Clean Air Act.

DATES: Written comments must be received on or before April 12, 2012.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID Number EPA-
R01-OAR-2012-0076 by one of the following methods:
    1. www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line instructions for 
submitting comments.
    2. Email: arnold.anne@epa.gov.
    3. Fax: (617) 918-0047.
    4. Mail: ``Docket Identification Number EPA-R01-OAR-2012-0076,'' 
Anne Arnold, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA New England 
Regional Office, 5 Post Office Square, Suite 100 (mail code: OEP05-2), 
Boston, MA 02109-3912.
    5. Hand Delivery or Courier: Deliver your comments to: Anne Arnold, 
Manager, Air Quality Planning Unit, Office of Ecosystem Protection, 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA New England Regional Office, 
5 Post Office Square, Suite 100, Boston, MA 02109-3912. Such deliveries 
are only accepted during the Regional Office's normal hours of 
operation. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday 
through Friday, 8:30 to 4:30, excluding legal holidays.
    Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-R01-OAR-
2012-0076. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included 
in the public docket without change and may be made available online at 
www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, 
unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential 
Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is 
restricted by statute. Do not submit through www.regulations.gov, or 
email, information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected. 
The www.regulations.gov Web site is an ``anonymous access'' system, 
which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information 
unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email 
comment directly to EPA without going through www.regulations.gov your 
email address will be automatically captured and included as part of 
the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on 
the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that 
you include your name and other contact information in the body of your 
comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your 
comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for 
clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic 
files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of 
encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.
    Docket: All documents in the electronic docket are listed in the 
www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some 
information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI or other information 
whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such 
as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be 
publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket 
materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or 
in hard copy at Office of Ecosystem Protection, U.S. Environmental 
Protection Agency, EPA New England Regional Office, 5 Post Office 
Square, Suite 100, Boston, MA. EPA requests that if at all possible, 
you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official 
hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8:30 to 4:30, excluding 
legal holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard P. Burkhart, Air Quality 
Planning Unit, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA New England 
Regional Office, 5 Post Office Square, Suite 100, Boston, MA 02109-
3912, telephone number (617) 918-1664, fax number (617) 918-0664, email 
Burkhart.Richard@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Throughout this document whenever ``we,'' 
``us,'' or ``our'' is used, we mean EPA.
    Organization of this document. The following outline is provided to 
aid in locating information in this preamble.

I. What actions is EPA taking?
II. What is the effect of these actions?
III. What is the background for these actions?
IV. What is EPA's analysis of the relevant air quality data?
V. Proposed Actions
VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

I. What actions is EPA taking?

    EPA is proposing two separate and independent determinations. 
First,

[[Page 14713]]

pursuant to section 181(b)(2)(A) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), and based 
upon complete, quality assured and certified air monitoring data for 
2007-2009, EPA is proposing to determine that the Boston-Lawrence-
Worcester (Eastern Massachusetts) moderate 8-hour ozone nonattainment 
area (hereafter ``the Eastern Massachusetts area'') attained the 1997 
8-hour NAAQS for ozone by its applicable attainment date, June 15, 
2010. The Eastern Massachusetts nonattainment area consists of 
Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Essex, Middlesex, Nantucket, Norfolk, 
Plymouth, Suffolk and Worcester Counties. Second, EPA is proposing to 
determine that the area has attained the 1997 8-hour standard based 
upon complete, quality-assured and certified ambient air monitoring 
data showing attainment of the 1997 ozone NAAQS for the 2008-2010 and 
2009-2011 monitoring periods.

II. What is the effect of these actions?

    First, under section 181(b)(2)(A) of the CAA and the provisions of 
EPA's ozone implementation rule (see 40 CFR Section 51.902(a)), EPA is 
proposing to determine that the Eastern Massachusetts area attained the 
1997 ozone NAAQS by its applicable attainment date of June 15, 2010. 
The effect of a final determination of attainment by the area's 
attainment date would be to discharge EPA's obligation under section 
181(b)(2)(A), and to establish that, in accordance with that section, 
the area would not be reclassified for failure to attain by its 
applicable attainment date. Second, EPA is proposing to determine that 
the area continues to attain the 1997 8-hour ozone standard based on 
the most recent three years of complete, quality-assured monitoring 
data.
    If this latter proposed determination is made final, under the 
provisions of EPA's ozone implementation rule (see 40 CFR Section 
51.918), the requirements for the Eastern Massachusetts moderate ozone 
nonattainment area to submit an attainment demonstration, a reasonable 
further progress plan, section 172(c)(9) contingency measures, and any 
other planning State Implementation Plans (SIPs) related to attainment 
of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS would be suspended for so long as the 
area continues to attain the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. This proposed 
action, if finalized, would not constitute a redesignation to 
attainment under the Clean Air Act (CAA) section 107(d)(3), because we 
would not yet have an approved maintenance plan for the area as 
required under section 175A of the CAA, nor a determination that the 
area has met the other requirements for redesignation. The 
classification and designation status of the area would remain moderate 
nonattainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS until such time as EPA 
determines that the area meets the CAA requirements for redesignation 
to attainment.
    If this determination of attainment is finalized and EPA 
subsequently determines, after notice-and-comment rulemaking in the 
Federal Register, that the area has violated the 1997 8-hour ozone 
standard, the basis for the suspension of these requirements would no 
longer exist, and the area would thereafter have to address the 
pertinent CAA requirements.

III. What is the background for these actions?

    On April 30, 2004 (69 FR 23857), EPA designated as nonattainment 
any area that was violating the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS, based on the 
three most recent years (2001-2003) of air quality data. The Eastern 
Massachusetts area was designated as a moderate ozone nonattainment 
area. Recent air quality data indicate that the Eastern Massachusetts 
area is attaining the 1997 8-hour ozone standard.

IV. What is EPA's analysis of the relevant air quality data?

    The EPA has reviewed the ambient air monitoring data for ozone, 
consistent with the requirements contained in 40 CFR Part 50 and 
recorded in the Air Quality Data System (AQS) database, for Eastern 
Massachusetts, from 2007 through 2011.
    Under EPA regulations at 40 CFR Part 50, the 1997 8-hour ozone 
standard is attained at a site when the 3-year average of the annual 
fourth-highest daily maximum 8-hour average ozone concentrations at an 
ozone monitor is less than or equal to 0.08 parts per million (ppm) 
(i.e., 0.084 ppm, based on the rounding convention in 40 CFR Part 50, 
Appendix I). This 3-year average is referred to as the design value. 
When the design value is less than or equal to 0.084 ppm at each 
monitoring site within the area, then the area is meeting the NAAQS. 
Also, the data completeness requirement is met when the 3-year average 
of the percent of days with valid ambient monitoring data is more than 
90%, and no single year has less than 75% data completeness as 
determined in Appendix I of 40 CFR Part 50.
    Table 1 shows the fourth-highest daily maximum 8-hour average ozone 
concentrations for the fourteen Eastern Massachusetts area monitors for 
the years 2007-2009, and the ozone design values for these same 
monitors based on 2007-2009. Tables 2 and 3 show similar data for the 
2008-2010 and 2009-2011 monitoring periods.

    Table 1--2007-2009 Fourth-High 8-Hour Average Ozone Concentrations and 2007-2009 Design Values (Parts per
                                   Million) in the Eastern Massachusetts Area
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                                                                                                         Design
                 Site ID                         Site location         4th High   4th High   4th High    value
                                                                         2007       2008       2009     (07-09)
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250250041...............................  Boston-Long Island *......      0.072      0.072      0.075      0.073
250250042...............................  Boston-Roxbury............      0.071      0.062      0.062      0.065
250170009...............................  Chelmsford................      0.087      0.069      0.068      0.074
250051002...............................  Fairhaven.................      0.075      0.080      0.069      0.074
250095005...............................  Haverhill.................      0.089      0.073      0.070      0.077
250092006...............................  Lynn......................      0.088      0.078      0.073      0.079
250213003...............................  Milton....................      0.088      0.076      0.071      0.078
250094004...............................  Newbury *.................      0.086      0.075      0.068      0.076
250094005...............................  Newburyport **............  .........  .........  .........  .........
250070001...............................  Oak Bluffs-Martha's             0.077      0.083      0.071      0.077
                                           Vineyard *.
250171102...............................  Stow......................      0.086      0.074      0.071      0.077
250010002...............................  Truro.....................      0.082      0.075      0.071      0.076
250270024...............................  Uxbridge (site began in     .........  .........      0.071  .........
                                           2009).
250270015...............................  Worcester.................      0.089      0.081      0.077      0.082
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[[Page 14714]]


    Table 2--2008-2010 Fourth-High 8-Hour Average Ozone Concentrations and 2008-2010 Design Values (Parts per
                                   Million) in the Eastern Massachusetts Area
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                                                                                                         Design
                 Site ID                         Site location         4th High   4th High   4th High    value
                                                                         2008       2009       2010     (08-10)
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250250041...............................  Boston-Long Island *......      0.072      0.075      0.070      0.072
250250042...............................  Boston-Roxbury............      0.062      0.062      0.063      0.062
250170009...............................  Chelmsford................      0.069      0.068      0.069      0.068
250051002...............................  Fairhaven.................      0.080      0.069      0.077      0.075
250095005...............................  Haverhill.................      0.073      0.070      0.071      0.071
250092006...............................  Lynn......................      0.078      0.073      0.072      0.074
250213003...............................  Milton....................      0.076      0.071      0.073      0.073
250094004...............................  Newbury* (moved to              0.075      0.068  .........  .........
                                           Newburyport).
250094005...............................  Newburyport **............  .........  .........      0.066  .........
250070001...............................  Oak Bluffs-Martha's             0.083      0.071      0.080      0.078
                                           Vineyard *.
250171102...............................  Stow......................      0.074      0.071      0.069      0.071
250010002...............................  Truro.....................      0.075      0.071      0.078      0.074
250270024...............................  Uxbridge (site began in     .........      0.071      0.071  .........
                                           2009).
250270015...............................  Worcester.................      0.081      0.077      0.070      0.076
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    Table 3--2009-2011 Fourth-High 8-Hour Average Ozone Concentrations and 2009-2011 Design Values (Parts per
                                   Million) in the Eastern Massachusetts Area
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                                                                                                         Design
                 Site ID                         Site location         4th High   4th High   4th High    value
                                                                         2009       2010       2011     (09-11)
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250250041...............................  Boston-Long Island*.......      0.075      0.070      0.066      0.070
250250042...............................  Boston-Roxbury............      0.062      0.063      0.060      0.061
250170009...............................  Chelmsford................      0.068      0.069      0.064      0.067
250051002...............................  Fairhaven.................      0.069      0.077      0.076      0.074
250095005...............................  Haverhill.................      0.070      0.071      0.066      0.069
250092006...............................  Lynn......................      0.073      0.072      0.069      0.071
250213003...............................  Milton....................      0.071      0.073      0.073      0.072
250094004...............................  Newbury* (moved to              0.068  .........  .........  .........
                                           Newburyport).
250094005...............................  Newburyport **............  .........      0.066      0.066  .........
250070001...............................  Oak Bluffs-Martha's             0.071      0.080      0.078      0.076
                                           Vineyard *.
250171102...............................  Stow......................      0.071      0.069      0.063      0.067
250010002...............................  Truro.....................      0.071      0.078      0.068      0.072
250270024...............................  Uxbridge (site began in         0.071      0.071      0.068      0.070
                                           2009).
250270015...............................  Worcester.................      0.077      0.070      0.065      0.070
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* Due to equipment malfunction at Oak Bluffs in 2009, sample collection error at Boston-Long Island in 2007 and
  monitor relocation at Newbury in 2009, the data capture percentages for these ozone monitors were below EPA
  data capture requirements for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for those years. The Massachusetts Department of
  Environmental Protection performed a missing data analysis for each site with low data capture in accordance
  with the regulatory requirements of 40 CFR Part 50, Appendix I. The Massachusetts missing data analysis used a
  combination of meteorology and air quality data for ozone monitors near the sites with low data capture, for
  the unmonitored days, to decisively conclude that on the days with missing ozone data, the ozone levels, if
  captured, would have been below the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. Thus, by rule, these days can be counted for the
  purpose of meeting the data completeness requirement. The missing data analysis for these sites was approved
  by EPA on December 15, 2011. The approval letter is in the Docket for this action.
** Newburyport began in 2009, but not enough data collected in 2009 to have a valid fourth high.

    EPA's review of these data indicates that the Eastern Massachusetts 
area attained the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS and met its applicable 
attainment deadline, based on 2007-2009 data. Our review also shows 
that the area continues to attain the standard, based on complete, 
quality-assured and certified data for the 2008-2010 and 2009-2011 
monitoring periods.
    EPA is soliciting public comments on the issues discussed in this 
notice or on other relevant matters pertaining to this rulemaking 
action. These comments will be considered before EPA takes final 
action. Interested parties may participate in the Federal rulemaking 
procedure by submitting written comments to the EPA New England 
Regional Office listed in the ADDRESSES section of this Federal 
Register.

V. Proposed Actions

    EPA is proposing two separate and independent determinations. 
First, under section 181(b)(2)(A) of the Clean Air Act and the 
provisions of EPA's ozone implementation rule (see 40 CFR Section 
51.902(a)), based upon complete, quality-assured and certified data for 
2007-2009, EPA is proposing to determine that the Eastern Massachusetts 
1997 8-hour ozone moderate nonattainment area attained the 1997 ozone 
NAAQS by its applicable attainment date of June 15, 2010. Second, EPA 
is proposing to determine that the Eastern Massachusetts area has 
attained the 1997 8-hour ozone standard, based on complete, quality-
assured data for the 2008-2010, and 2009-2011 monitoring periods. As 
provided in 40 CFR Section 51.918, if EPA finalizes this determination, 
it would suspend the requirements for Massachusetts to submit planning 
SIPs related to attainment of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for this 
area, for so long as the area continues to attain the standard.\1\
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    \1\ Massachusetts submitted an attainment demonstration and 
contingency measures for this area on Jan. 31, 2008. EPA has not 
taken action on the attainment demonstration, but has proposed 
approval of the reasonable further progress plan and contingency 
measures. (See 75 FR 57221, Sept. 10, 2010.)

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[[Page 14715]]

VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    These actions propose to make determinations of attainment based on 
air quality, and would, if finalized, result in the suspension of 
certain Federal requirements, and/or would not impose additional 
requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, these 
proposed actions:
     Are not ``significant regulatory actions'' subject to 
review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 
12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993);
     Do not impose an information collection burden under the 
provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);
     Are certified as not having a significant economic impact 
on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
     Do not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or 
uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);
     Do not have Federalism implications as specified in 
Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
     Are not economically significant regulatory actions based 
on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 
19885, April 23, 1997);
     Are not significant regulatory actions subject to 
Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
     Are not subject to the requirements of Section 12(d) of 
the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 
272 note) because application of those requirements would be 
inconsistent with the Clean Air Act; and
     Do not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to 
address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental 
effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under 
Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).
    In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as 
specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), 
because the SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country located in 
the state, and EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct 
costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by 
reference, Intergovernmental relations, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

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

    Dated: February 29, 2012.
 H. Curtis Spalding,
Regional Administrator, EPA New England.
[FR Doc. 2012-6030 Filed 3-12-12; 8:45 am]
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