[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 99 (Thursday, May 22, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 29362-29369]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-11911]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 80

[EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0787; FRL-9911-12-OAR]


Approval of States' Requests To Relax the Federal Reid Vapor 
Pressure Volatility Standard in Florida, and the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel 
Hill and Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point Areas in North Carolina

AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final 
action to approve requests from Florida and North Carolina for the EPA 
to relax the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) Standard applicable to gasoline 
introduced into commerce from June 1 to September 15 of each year in 
six counties in Florida, and in counties in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel 
Hill Area (also referred to as the ``Triangle Area'') and the 
Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point Area (also referred to as the 
``Triad Area'') in North Carolina. Specifically, the EPA is approving 
amendments to the regulations to change the RVP standard for six 
counties in Florida, and for the counties in the Triangle and Triad 
Areas from 7.8 pounds per square inch (psi) to 9.0 psi for gasoline. 
Additionally, the EPA is responding to adverse comments received for 
this action. The EPA has determined that these changes to the Federal 
RVP regulation are consistent with the applicable provisions of the 
Clean Air Act (CAA or Act).

DATES: This final rule will become effective on May 30, 2014.

ADDRESSES: The EPA has established a docket for this action under 
Docket Identification No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0787. All documents in the 
docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed 
in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., 
Confidential Business Information 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 through www.regulations.gov or in hard 
copy at the Air Docket, EPA/DC, EPA West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution 
Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 
a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The 
telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the 
telephone number for the Air Docket is (202) 566-1742.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rudolph Kapichak, Office of 
Transportation and Air Quality, Environmental Protection Agency, 2000 
Traverwood Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105; telephone number: (734) 214-
4574; fax number (734) 214-4052; email address: 
kapichak.rudolph@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Organization of this document. The following 
outline is provided to aid in locating information in this preamble.

Table of Contents

I. General Information

[[Page 29363]]

II. Actions Being Taken
III. History of Gasoline Volatility Requirement
IV. The EPA's Policy Regarding Relaxation of Volatility Standards in 
Ozone Nonattainment Areas That Are Redesignated as Attainment Areas
V. The EPA's Analysis of Florida's Request To Relax the Federal RVP 
Requirements in the State
VI. The EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's Requests To Relax the 
Federal RVP Requirements in the Triangle and Triad Areas
VII. Response to Comments
VIII. Final Action
IX. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews
X. Legal Authority and Statutory Provisions

    Effective date. Section 553(d) of the Administrative Procedure Act 
(APA), 5 U.S.C. Chapter 5, generally provides that rules may not take 
effect earlier than 30 days after they are published in the Federal 
Register. The EPA is issuing this final rule under CAA section 
307(d)(1). Section 307(d)(1) states: ``The provisions of section 553 
through 557 . . . of Title 5 shall not, except as expressly provided in 
this section, apply to actions to which this subsection applies.'' 
Thus, section 553(d) of the APA does not apply to this rule. EPA is 
nevertheless acting consistently with the policies underlying APA 
section 553(d) in making this rule effective on May 30, 2014. APA 
section 553(d) allows an effective date less than 30 days after 
publication for a rule that ``that grants or recognizes an exemption or 
relieves a restriction.'' 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(1). This rule fits within 
that exception because it lifts the restriction on the introduction 
into commerce of gasoline with a RVP of greater than 7.8 psi sold in 
areas in Florida and North Carolina between June 1 and September 15 of 
each year. Because today's action can be considered to relieve a 
restriction that would otherwise prevent the introduction into commerce 
of gasoline with a RVP of greater than 7.8 psi, the EPA is making this 
action effective on May 30, 2014.

I. General Information

    Throughout this document, ``the Agency'' is used to mean the EPA.
    Entities potentially affected by this rule are fuel producers and 
distributors who do business in Florida and in North Carolina. 
Regulated entities include:

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                                                            NAICS Codes
       Examples of potentially regulated entities               \a\
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Petroleum refineries....................................          324110
Gasoline Marketers and Distributors.....................          424710
                                                                  424720
Gasoline Retail Stations................................          447110
Gasoline Transporters...................................          484220
                                                                  484230
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\a\ North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

    This table provides only a guide for readers regarding entities 
likely to be regulated by this action. You should carefully examine the 
regulations in 40 CFR 80.27 to determine whether your facility is 
impacted. If you have further questions, call the person listed in the 
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble.

II. Actions Being Taken

    This final rule approves a request from Florida to change the 
summertime RVP standard for Broward, Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Palm 
Beach and Pinellas counties in Florida from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi by 
amending the EPA's regulations at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2). Additionally, 
this final rule approves a request from North Carolina to change the 
summertime RVP standard for the Triangle and Triad Areas from 7.8 psi 
to 9.0 psi by amending the EPA's regulations at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2). The 
Triangle Area is comprised of Durham and Wake Counties, and the 
Dutchville Township portion of Granville County. The Triad Area is 
comprised of the counties of Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford in their 
entirety, and the portion of Davie County bounded by the Yadkin River, 
Dutchmans Creek, North Carolina Highway 801, Fulton Creek and back to 
Yadkin River.
    In previous rulemakings, the EPA approved state implementation plan 
(SIP) revisions from Florida and North Carolina which provided 
technical analyses that demonstrated that removal of the Federal RVP 
requirements of 7.8 psi for gasoline sold between June 1 and September 
15 of each year in the six counties in Florida, and the North Carolina 
Triangle and Triad Areas would not interfere with maintenance of the 
national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) in these areas. For more 
information on Florida's SIP revision for the six Florida counties and 
the EPA's analysis of Florida's SIP revision refer to the January 6, 
2014, final rule at 79 FR 573; on North Carolina's SIP revision for the 
Triangle Area refer to the January 2, 2014 final rule at 79 FR 47; and 
on North Carolina's SIP revision for the Triad Area refer to the 
January 24, 2014 final rule at 79 FR 4082.
    As mentioned above, this final rule approves requests from Florida 
and North Carolina to change the summertime RVP standard for six 
Florida counties, and for the Triangle and Triad Areas from 7.8 psi to 
9.0 psi by amending the EPA's regulations at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2). The 
preamble for this rulemaking is organized as follows. Section III 
provides the history of federal gasoline volatility regulation. Section 
IV describes the policy regarding relaxation of volatility standards in 
ozone nonattainment areas that are redesignated as attainment areas. 
Section V provides information specific to Florida's request for the 
six counties currently subject to the 7.8 psi summertime RVP 
requirements. Section VI provides information specific to North 
Carolina's requests for the counties in the Triangle and Triad Areas 
that are currently subject to the 7.8 psi summertime RVP requirements. 
Section VII provides EPA's response to the adverse comment received. 
Finally, Section VIII presents the final action in response to the 
requests from Florida and North Carolina.

III. History of the Gasoline Volatility Requirement

    On August 19, 1987 (52 FR 31274), the EPA determined that gasoline 
nationwide was becoming increasingly volatile, causing an increase in 
evaporative emissions from gasoline-powered vehicles and equipment. 
Evaporative emissions from gasoline, referred to as volatile organic 
compounds (VOC), are precursors to the formation of tropospheric ozone 
and contribute to the nation's ground-level ozone problem. Exposure to 
ground-level ozone can reduce lung function (thereby aggravating asthma 
or other respiratory conditions), increase susceptibility to 
respiratory infection, and may contribute to premature death in people 
with heart and lung disease.
    The most common measure of fuel volatility that is useful in 
evaluating gasoline evaporative emissions is RVP. Under section 211(c) 
of the CAA, the EPA promulgated regulations on March 22, 1989 (54 FR 
11868) that set maximum limits for the RVP of gasoline sold during the 
regulatory control periods that were established on a state-by-state 
basis in the final rule. The regulatory control periods addressed the 
portion of the year when peak ozone concentrations were expected. These 
regulations constituted Phase I of a two-phase nationwide program, 
which was designed to reduce the volatility of commercial gasoline 
during the high ozone season. On June 11, 1990 (55 FR 23658), the EPA 
promulgated more stringent volatility controls as Phase II of the 
volatility control program. These requirements established maximum

[[Page 29364]]

RVP standards of 9.0 psi or 7.8 psi (depending on the state, the month, 
and the area's initial ozone attainment designation with respect to the 
1-hour ozone NAAQS).
    The 1990 CAA Amendments established a new section, 211(h), to 
address fuel volatility. Section 211(h) requires the EPA to promulgate 
regulations making it unlawful to sell, offer for sale, dispense, 
supply, offer for supply, transport, or introduce into commerce 
gasoline with an RVP level in excess of 9.0 psi during the high ozone 
season. Section 211(h) prohibits the EPA from establishing a volatility 
standard more stringent than 9.0 psi in an attainment area, except that 
the Agency may impose a lower (more stringent) standard in any former 
ozone nonattainment area redesignated to attainment.
    On December 12, 1991 (56 FR 64704), the EPA modified the Phase II 
volatility regulations to be consistent with section 211(h) of the CAA. 
The modified regulations prohibited the sale of gasoline with an RVP 
above 9.0 psi in all areas designated attainment for ozone, beginning 
in 1992. For areas designated as nonattainment, the regulations 
retained the original Phase II standards published on June 11, 1990 (55 
FR 23658), which included the 7.8 psi ozone season limitation for 
certain areas. As stated in the preamble to the Phase II volatility 
controls and reiterated in the proposed change to the volatility 
standards published in 1991, the EPA will rely on states to initiate 
changes to the volatility program. The EPA's policy for approving such 
changes is described in Section IV of this preamble.
    Florida and North Carolina initiated these changes by requesting 
that the EPA relax the 7.8 psi RVP standard for counties that are in 
ozone maintenance areas. Accordingly, the States revised their original 
modeling and maintenance demonstrations for these areas to reflect 
continued attainment under the relaxed 9.0 psi RVP standard that the 
States have requested. See Section V of this action for information 
specific to Florida's request for the six counties currently subject to 
the 7.8 psi summertime RVP requirements. See Section VI of this action 
for information specific to North Carolina's requests for the counties 
in the Triangle and Triad Areas that are currently subject to the 7.8 
psi summertime RVP requirements.

IV. The EPA's Policy Regarding Relaxation of Volatility Standards in 
Ozone Nonattainment Areas That Are Redesignated as Attainment Areas

    As stated in the preamble for the EPA's amended Phase II volatility 
standards (56 FR 64706), any change in the volatility standard for a 
nonattainment area that was subsequently redesignated as an attainment 
area must be accomplished through a separate rulemaking that revises 
the applicable standard for that area. Thus, for former 1-hour ozone 
nonattainment areas where the EPA mandated a Phase II volatility 
standard of 7.8 psi RVP in the December 12, 1991 rulemaking, the 7.8 
psi RVP will remain in effect, even after such an area is redesignated 
to attainment, until a separate rulemaking is completed that revises 
the RVP standard in that area from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi.
    As explained in the December 12, 1991, rulemaking, the EPA believes 
that relaxation of an applicable RVP standard is best accomplished in 
conjunction with the redesignation process. In order for an ozone 
nonattainment area to be redesignated as an attainment area, section 
107(d)(3) of the Act requires the state to make a showing, pursuant to 
section 175A of the Act, that the area is capable of maintaining 
attainment for the ozone NAAQS for ten years. Depending on the area's 
circumstances, this maintenance plan will either demonstrate that the 
area is capable of maintaining attainment for ten years without the 
more stringent volatility standard or that the more stringent 
volatility standard may be necessary for the area to maintain its 
attainment with the ozone NAAQS. Therefore, in the context of a request 
for redesignation, the EPA will not relax the volatility standard 
unless the state requests a relaxation and the maintenance plan 
demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the EPA, that the area will 
maintain attainment for ten years without the need for the more 
stringent volatility standard.

V. The EPA's Analysis of Florida's Request To Relax the Federal RVP 
Requirements in the State

    On November 6, 1991, the EPA designated and classified the 
Southeast Florida area (i.e., Broward, Dade and Palm Beach counties) as 
Moderate; the Jacksonville area (i.e., Duval County) as Transitional; 
and the Tampa area (i.e., Hillsborough and Pinellas counties) as 
Marginal nonattainment areas for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS. See 56 FR 
56694 (November 6, 1991). Among the requirements applicable to 
nonattainment areas for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS was the requirement to 
meet certain RVP standards for gasoline sold commercially during the 
high ozone season. See 55 FR 23658 (June 11, 1990). Thus, the RVP 
requirements for gasoline sold in these three 1-hour ozone 
nonattainment areas was 7.8 psi from June 1 through September 15 of 
each year. Subsequently, each area was redesignated to attainment for 
the 1-hour ozone NAAQS.\1\ Florida's redesignation requests did not 
include a request for relaxation of the gasoline volatility 
standard.2 3
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    \1\ 60 FR 41, (January 3, 1995); 60 FR 10326 (February 24, 
1995); and 60 FR 62748 (December 7, 1995), respectively.
    \2\ Effective on June 15, 2004, Broward, Dade, Duval, 
Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Pinellas Counties were designated 
unclassifiable/attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. See 69 FR 
23857.
    \3\ Effective on July 20, 2012, the same counties were 
designated as unclassifiable/attainment for the 2008 8-hour ozone 
NAAQS. See 77 FR 30088.
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    On August 15, 2013, the State of Florida, through the Florida 
Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP), submitted a request for 
the EPA to relax the Federal RVP requirement of 7.8 psi in Broward, 
Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Pinellas Counties in Florida. 
The State also submitted a technical analysis which demonstrated that 
the less-stringent RVP in these counties would not interfere with 
continued maintenance of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS or any other 
applicable standard.\4\ Specifically, the State updated the 10-year 
maintenance plans that were submitted for the three 1-hour ozone 
maintenance areas under section 110(a)(1) of the CAA for the 1997 ozone 
NAAQS.\5\ As required, these section 110(a)(1) maintenance plans 
provided for continued attainment and maintenance of the 1997 8-hour 
ozone NAAQS for at least 10 years from the effective date of these 
areas' designation as attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. These 
plans also included components demonstrating how each area will 
continue to attain the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS, and provided 
contingency measures should an area violate the NAAQS. Florida's 
previous ozone redesignation requests and maintenance plans for these 
areas did

[[Page 29365]]

not remove the 7.8 psi RVP standard. See 75 FR 29671 (May 27, 2010).
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    \4\ Maintenance areas for the 1-hour ozone standard designated 
attainment/unclassifiable for the 1997 8-hour ozone standard are 
required to submit a maintenance plan under section 110(a)(1) of the 
CAA demonstrating maintenance out to 10 years after designation. See 
69 FR 23996 (April 30, 2004).
    \5\ The EPA has determined that redesignated 1-hour ozone 
attainment areas that are designated 8-hour ozone attainment areas 
may rely on the section 110(a)(1) maintenance plan for purposes of 
requesting relaxation of the more stringent volatility standard. See 
73 FR 8202, 8205 (February 13, 2008).
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    As mentioned above, on August 15, 2013, FDEP submitted changes to 
the three CAA section 110(a)(1) maintenance plans that collectively 
cover Broward, Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Pinellas 
Counties in Florida. Florida's August 15, 2013, SIP revision modifies 
the existing section 110(a)(1) maintenance plans to account for a less 
stringent applicable RVP gasoline requirement of 9.0 psi for these 
areas. Specifically, Florida's August 15, 2013, SIP revision included 
an evaluation of the impact that the removal of the 7.8 psi RVP 
requirement would have on maintenance of the 1997 and 2008 ozone 
standards, and on other applicable NAAQS. The EPA evaluated Florida's 
August 15, 2013, SIP revision in a previous rulemaking that was subject 
to public notice-and-comment and no comments were received. The EPA 
approved Florida's August 15, 2013, SIP revision on January 6, 2014. 
See 79 FR 573. In this final action, based on the previous approval of 
Florida's August 15, 2013, SIP revision, and the fact that the areas 
are currently attaining all ozone NAAQS, the EPA is approving Florida's 
request to relax the high ozone season RVP standard for Broward, Dade, 
Duval, Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Pinellas counties from 7.8 psi to 
9.0 psi.

VI. The EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's Requests To Relax the 
Federal RVP Requirements in the Triangle and Triad Areas

    The following two sections provide the EPA's analysis of North 
Carolina's requests to relax the Federal RVP requirements in the 
Triangle and Triad Areas.

A. The EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's Requests To Relax the Federal 
RVP Requirement in the Triangle Area

    On November 6, 1991, the EPA designated and classified Durham and 
Wake Counties, and the Dutchville Township portion of Granville County 
(also known as the Triangle Area at the time) as a Moderate 
nonattainment area for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS. See 56 FR 56694 
(November 6, 1991). Among the requirements applicable to nonattainment 
areas for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS was the requirement to meet certain 
RVP standards for gasoline sold commercially during the high ozone 
season. See 55 FR 23658 (June 11, 1990). Thus, the RVP requirement for 
gasoline sold in the Triangle Area was 7.8 psi from June 1 through 
September 15 of each year. On April 18, 1994, the Triangle Area was 
redesignated to attainment for the 1-hour ozone standard. See 59 FR 
18300. North Carolina's redesignation request for the Triangle Area did 
not include a request for relaxation of the gasoline volatility 
standard.6 7 8
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    \6\ Effective on June 15, 2004, the nonattainment area for the 
Triangle Area for the 1997 ozone NAAQS was expanded from Durham and 
Wake Counties, and the Dutchville Township portion of Granville 
County, to also include Franklin, Johnston, Orange, and Person 
Counties, and the remainder of Granville County and Baldwin, Center, 
New Hope and Williams Townships in Chatham County. See 69 FR 23857.
    \7\ On December 26, 2007 the Triangle Area was redesignated to 
attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. See 72 FR 72948.
    \8\ Effective on July 20, 2012, the same counties were 
designated as unclassifiable/attainment for the 2008 8-hour ozone 
NAAQS. See 77 FR 30088.
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    On March 27, 2013, the State of North Carolina, through the North 
Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NC DENR), 
submitted a request for the EPA to relax the Federal RVP requirement of 
7.8 psi in Wake and Durham Counties, and the Dutchville Township 
portion of Granville County that was originally included in the 1-hour 
ozone nonattainment area. The State also submitted a technical analysis 
that demonstrated that the less-stringent RVP in these counties would 
not interfere with continued maintenance of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS 
or any other applicable standard. Specifically, the State updated the 
10-year maintenance plan that was submitted for the Triangle 1997 8-
hour ozone maintenance area under section 175A of the CAA. As required, 
this section 175A maintenance plan provided for continued attainment 
and maintenance of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for at least 10 years 
from the EPA's redesignation of the area from nonattainment to 
attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. This plan also included 
components demonstrating how the area will continue to attain the 1997 
8-hour ozone NAAQS, and provided contingency measures should the area 
violate the NAAQS. North Carolina's previous ozone redesignation 
requests and maintenance plans for this area did not remove the 7.8 psi 
RVP standard. See 72 FR 72948 (December 26, 2007).
    As mentioned above, on March 27, 2013, NC DENR submitted changes to 
the section 175A maintenance plan for the Triangle Area. North 
Carolina's March 27, 2013, SIP revision modifies the existing section 
175A maintenance plan to account for a less stringent applicable RVP 
gasoline requirement of 9.0 psi for the Triangle Area. Specifically, 
North Carolina's March 27, 2013, SIP revision included an evaluation of 
the impact that the removal of the 7.8 psi RVP requirement would have 
on maintenance of the 1997 and 2008 ozone standards, and on other 
applicable NAAQS. The EPA evaluated North Carolina's March 27, 2013, 
SIP revision in a previous rulemaking that was subject to public 
notice-and-comment. No adverse comments and one supportive comment were 
received on that proposed action. The EPA approved North Carolina's 
March 27, 2013, SIP revision on January 2, 2014. See 79 FR 47. In this 
action, based on the EPA's previous approval of North Carolina's March 
27, 2013, SIP revision, and the fact that the Triangle Area is 
currently attaining all ozone NAAQS, the EPA is approving North 
Carolina's request to relax the RVP standard for Wake and Durham 
Counties, and a portion of Granville County in North Carolina from 7.8 
psi to 9.0 psi from June 1 through September 15 of each year.

B. The EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's Requests To Relax the Federal 
RVP Requirement in the Triad Area

    On November 6, 1991, the EPA designated Davidson, Forsyth and 
Guilford counties in their entirety and the portion of Davie County 
bounded by the Yadkin River, Dutchmans Creek, North Carolina Highway 
801, Fulton Creek and back to Yadkin River in the Triad Area as a 
Moderate nonattainment area for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS. See 56 FR 56694 
(November 6, 1991). Among the requirements applicable to nonattainment 
areas for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS was the requirement to meet certain 
RVP standards for gasoline sold commercially during the ozone season. 
See 55 FR 23658 (June 11, 1990). Thus, the RVP requirement for gasoline 
sold in the Triad Area was 7.8 psi from June 1 through September 15 of 
each year. On April 18, 1994, the Triad Area was redesignated to 
attainment for the 1-hour ozone standard. See 59 FR 18300. North 
Carolina's redesignation request for the Triad Area did not include a 
request for the relaxation of the gasoline volatility 
standard.9 10 11 12
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    \9\ Effective June 15, 2004 for the 1997 ozone NAAQS, the Triad 
Area was designated as nonattainment with a deferred effective date 
as part of the Early Action Compact (EAC) program. As part of this 
action the Triad Area was expanded to include the entire county of 
Davie, and Alamance, Caswell, Randolph, and Rockingham Counties in 
their entirety. See 69 FR 23857.
    \10\ For more information on the EAC program, see http://www.epa.gov/airquality/eac/fs20080331_eac.html.
    \11\ The Triad Area attained the 1997 ozone NAAQS and on 
February 2, 2008, the EPA finalized an action for 13 nonattainment 
areas with deferred effective dates, including the Triad Area, 
designating these areas attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. 
However, as a former 1-hour ozone maintenance area the Triad Area 
was required to submit a 10-year maintenance plan under section 
110(a)(1) of the CAA. See 73 FR 17897.
    \12\ Effective July 20, 2012, the Triad Area counties were 
designated as unclassifiable/attainment for the 2008 8-hour ozone 
NAAQS. See 77 FR 30088.

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[[Page 29366]]

    On April 12, 2013, the State of North Carolina, through NC DENR, 
submitted a request for the EPA to relax the Federal RVP requirement of 
7.8 psi in Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford Counties and the relevant 
portion of Davie County. The State also submitted a technical analysis 
which demonstrated that the less-stringent RVP in the aforementioned 
counties would not interfere with continued maintenance of the 1997 8-
hour ozone NAAQS or any other applicable standard. Specifically, the 
State updated the 10-year maintenance plan that was submitted for the 
Triad 1-hour ozone maintenance area under section 110(a)(1) of the CAA 
for the 1997 ozone NAAQS.\13\ As required, this section 110(a)(1) 
maintenance plan provided for continued attainment and maintenance of 
the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for at least 10 years from the effective 
date of the area's designation as attainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone 
NAAQS. This plan also included components demonstrating how the area 
will continue to attain the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS, and provided 
contingency measures should the area violate the NAAQS. North 
Carolina's previous ozone redesignation request and maintenance plan 
for this area did not remove the 7.8 psi RVP standard. See 77 FR 3611 
(January 25, 2012).
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    \13\ The EPA has determined that redesignated 1-hour ozone 
attainment areas that are designated 8-hour ozone attainment areas 
may rely on the section 110(a)(1) maintenance plan for purposes of 
requesting relaxation of the more stringent volatility standard. 73 
FR 8202, 8205 (February 13, 2008).
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    As mentioned above, on April 12, 2013, NC DENR submitted changes to 
the section 110(a)(1) maintenance plan for the Triad Area. North 
Carolina's April 12, 2013, SIP revision modifies the existing section 
110(a)(1) maintenance plan to account for a less stringent applicable 
RVP gasoline requirement of 9.0 psi for the area. Specifically, North 
Carolina's April 12, 2013, SIP revision included an evaluation of the 
impact that the removal of the 7.8 psi RVP requirement would have on 
maintenance of the 1997 and 2008 ozone standards, and on other 
applicable NAAQS. The EPA evaluated North Carolina's April 12, 2013, 
SIP revision in a previous rulemaking that was subject to public 
notice-and-comment. No adverse comments and one supportive comment were 
received on that proposed action. The EPA approved North Carolina's 
April 12, 2013, SIP revision on January 24, 2014. See 79 FR 4082. In 
this action, based on the previous approval of North Carolina's April 
12, 2013, SIP revision, and the fact that the Triad Area is currently 
attaining all ozone NAAQS, the EPA is approving North Carolina's 
request to relax the high ozone season RVP standard for Davidson, 
Forsyth and Guilford Counties and a portion of Davie County from 7.8 
psi to 9.0 psi.

VII. Response to Comments

    On March 31, 2014 (79 FR 17889), the EPA published a direct final 
rule to approve requests from Florida and North Carolina for the EPA to 
relax the RVP standard in six counties in Florida and in the Triangle 
Area and Triad Area in North Carolina. The EPA published a parallel 
proposal in the event that adverse comments were received such that the 
direct final rule would need to be withdrawn. Specifically, in the 
direct final rule, the EPA stated that if adverse comments were 
received by April 30, 2014, the direct final rule would be withdrawn 
and not take effect. The EPA further stated that the corresponding 
proposed rule would remain in effect and that any adverse comments 
received would be responded to in a subsequent final rule provided the 
EPA was able to address such comments.\14\ On March 29, 2014, EPA 
received comments on the rulemaking. Although, for the reasons 
discussed below, these comments are outside of the scope of today's 
action, the EPA viewed these comments as adverse. Therefore, the EPA 
has withdrawn the direct final rule in a separate Federal Register 
notice and is providing a summary of comments received and the EPA's 
responses to the comments in today's action.
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    \14\ The EPA also noted that an additional public comment period 
would not be instituted for the action.
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    Comments: The commenter stated ``EPA must disapprove this proposal 
because EPA has failed to conduct a Clean Air Act 110(l) analysis of 
the impacts the increased emissions will have on the 2008 ozone NAAQS. 
In addition, EPA would need to reconsider its analysis for Florida and 
North Carolina's CAA 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the 1997 ozone NAAQS and 
consider this rule rollback for 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the 2008 ozone 
NAAQS. This includes impacts in downwind nonattainment areas. 
Furthermore, ozone monitors in Forsyth and Guildford Counties have 
2010-2012 design values above the 2008 ozone NAAQS.''
    Response: The EPA disagrees with the commenter's assertions that 
EPA should disapprove the proposal, and generally believes these 
comments are beyond the scope of today's action. Section 110(l) of the 
Clean Air Act applies to revisions to a state implementation plan 
submitted by a State. However, this rulemaking does not approve any SIP 
revisions. Rather, it revises federal regulations (40 CFR Part 80) 
applicable to gasoline introduced into commerce in certain areas. 
Moreover, contrary to the commenter's claims, EPA did evaluate the 
impacts of change to the summertime RVP (consistent with CAA section 
110(l)) in relation to the States' requests for the EPA to relax the 
RVP requirements for six counties in Florida and for the Triad and 
Triangle Areas in North Carolina. The EPA's analyses in relation to the 
States' requests for the EPA to relax the RVP requirement in the 
aforementioned areas were included in previous rulemakings (see 79 FR 
47 (January 2, 2014), 79 FR 573 (January 6, 2014), and 79 FR 4082 
(January 24, 2014)) through which the EPA approved Florida and North 
Carolina's SIP revisions that address these changes. The EPA's analyses 
(which also included evaluation of impacts to the 2008 8-hour ozone 
standard in addition to other applicable requirements of the CAA) for 
each area were subject to a 30-day public notice-and-comment, and no 
adverse comments were received on any of the proposed actions. The 
opportunity for the commenter to express concerns regarding the 
requirements of Section 110(l), and the EPA's analyses of whether the 
change to the Federal RVP requirements for the six counties in Florida 
and for the Triangle and the Triad areas would interfere with 
attainment or maintenance of the NAAQS was during the EPA's previous 
rulemakings where the EPA specifically solicited comment on this. The 
notices for this rulemaking did not reopen any of those actions.
    With regard to the commenter's assertion that ``. . . ozone 
monitors in Forsyth and Guildford Counties have 2010-2012 design values 
above the 2008 ozone NAAQS,'' we note (as included in the EPA's 
rulemaking for the Triad area (79 FR 4082)) that based on the 2011-2013 
design values, the ozone monitors in Forsyth and Guilford Counties were 
not above the 2008 8-hour ozone NAAQS.
    The commenter also mentions that ``EPA would need to reconsider its 
analysis for Florida and North Carolina's CAA 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the

[[Page 29367]]

1997 ozone NAAQS and consider this rule rollback for 110(a)(2)(D)(i) 
for the 2008 ozone NAAQS.'' This comment is not directly relevant to 
this action as the comment does not address whether or not the EPA 
should finalize the proposed action, but instead identifies additional 
actions the commenter believes the EPA would need to take if this 
action is finalized. Also, the comment does not clearly identify any 
specific analysis that should be reconsidered by the EPA. The EPA is 
currently working on a proposed rule to quantify state obligations with 
respect to section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and will 
be accepting public comment on all aspects of that proposal. The EPA 
has not recently acted on SIP submissions addressing the requirements 
of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) with respect to the 1997 ozone NAAQS for 
either Florida or North Carolina.\15\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \15\ Florida and North Carolina both submitted SIPs intended to 
address the requirements of 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) through participation 
in the CAIR trading programs. These SIP submissions were approved by 
EPA. See 72 FR 58016 (October 12, 2007) (Florida), 72 FR 56914 
(October 5, 2007) (North Carolina). The D.C. Circuit, however, 
subsequently remanded CAIR, finding that participation in the CAIR 
trading programs could not be said to satisfy states' 
110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) obligations. In response to the remand of CAIR, 
the EPA has finalized a new rule to address the interstate transport 
of NOX and SO2 in the eastern United States. 
See 76 FR 48208 (August 8, 2011) (``the Cross-State Air Pollution 
Rule'' or CSAPR). This rule was vacated by the D.C. Circuit in 2012. 
EME Homer City Generation L.P. v. EPA, 696 F.3d 7 (D.C. Cir. 2012), 
cert. granted 133 S.Ct. 2857 (2013) On April 29, 2014 the Supreme 
Court reversed the judgment of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 
D.C. Circuit and remanded the case for further proceedings. (EPA et 
al. v. EME Homer City Generation L.P., et al., Slip Op.No. 12-1182, 
S. Ct. 2013, April 29, 2014)
    .
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

VIII. Final Action

    The EPA is taking final action to approve requests from Florida and 
North Carolina for the EPA to relax the RVP applicable to gasoline 
introduced into commerce from June 1 to September 15 of each year in 
six counties in Florida, and in the counties of the Triangle and Triad 
Areas in North Carolina. Specifically, this action amends the 
applicable RVP standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi provided at 40 CFR 
80.27(a)(2) for Broward, Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Palm Beach and 
Pinellas counties in Florida; Wake and Durham Counties, and a portion 
of Dutchville Township in Granville County in the Triangle Area in 
North Carolina; and Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford Counties and a 
portion of Davie County in the Triad Area.

IX. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive 
Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review

    As of January 24, 2014, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), 
determined that this action is not a ``significant regulatory action'' 
under the terms of Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) 
and is therefore not subject to review under Executive Orders 12866 and 
13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011).

B. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This action does not impose an information collection burden under 
the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq. 
Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.3.

C. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) generally requires an agency 
to prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to 
notice and comment rulemaking requirements under the Administrative 
Procedure Act or any other statute 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 organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions.
    For purposes of assessing the impacts of today's rule on small 
entities, small entity is defined as: (1) A small business as defined 
by the Small Business Administration's (SBA) regulations at 13 CFR 
121.201; (2) a small governmental jurisdiction that is a government of 
a city, county, town, school district or special district with a 
population of less than 50,000; and (3) a small organization that is 
any not-for-profit enterprise which is independently owned and operated 
and is not dominant in its field.
    After considering the economic impacts of today's final rule on 
small entities, I certify that this action will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The small 
entities directly regulated by this final rule are refiners, importers 
or blenders of gasoline that choose to produce or import low RVP 
gasoline for sale in the Florida and North Carolina areas and gasoline 
distributors and retail stations in those areas.
    This action will relax the Federal RVP standard for gasoline sold 
in portions of Florida and North Carolina, during the ozone control 
season (June 1 to September 15), from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi, and is 
therefore expected not to have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. The rule does not impose any 
requirements or create impacts on small entities beyond those, if any, 
already required by or resulting from the CAA Section 211(h) Volatility 
Control program.

D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    This rule does not contain a Federal mandate that may result in 
expenditures of $100 million or more for State, local, and tribal 
governments, in the aggregate, or the private sector in any one year. 
Today's final rule affects portions of Florida and North Carolina of 
which the EPA estimates lower fuel costs as a result of this action, 
therefore reducing cost on businesses and consumers. Thus, this rule is 
not subject to the requirements of sections 202 and 205 of the UMRA.
    This rule is also not subject to the requirements of section 203 of 
UMRA because it contains no regulatory requirements that might 
significantly or uniquely affect small governments. As discussed above, 
the rule relaxes an existing standard and affects only the gasoline 
industry.

E. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This action does not have federalism implications. It will not have 
substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between 
the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power 
and responsibilities among the various levels of government, as 
specified in Executive Order 13132. Thus, Executive Order 13132 does 
not apply to this rule.

F. Executive Order 13175

    Executive Order 13175, entitled ``Consultation and Coordination 
with Indian Tribal Governments'' (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), 
requires the EPA to develop an accountable process to ensure 
``meaningful and timely input by tribal officials in the development of 
regulatory policies that have tribal implications.'' This action does 
not have tribal implications, as specified in Executive Order 13175.

G. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental 
Health and Safety Risks

    This action is not subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, 
April 23, 1997) because it is not economically significant as defined 
in Executive Order 12866, and because the Agency does not believe the 
environmental health or safety risks addressed by this

[[Page 29368]]

action present a disproportionate risk to children.

H. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That 
Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use

    This action is not subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355 
(May 22, 2001)), because it is not a significant regulatory action 
under Executive Order 12866.

I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act

    Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement 
Act of 1995 (``NTTAA''), Public Law 104-113, 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272 note) 
directs the EPA to use voluntary consensus standards in its regulatory 
activities unless to do so would be inconsistent with applicable law or 
otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical 
standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling 
procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by 
voluntary consensus standards bodies. The NTTAA directs the EPA to 
provide Congress, through OMB, explanations when the Agency decides not 
to use available and applicable voluntary consensus standards.
    This action does not involve technical standards. Therefore, the 
EPA did not consider the use of any voluntary consensus standards.

J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental 
Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations

    Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629 (Feb. 16, 1994)) establishes 
federal executive policy on environmental justice. Its main provision 
directs federal agencies, to the greatest extent practicable and 
permitted by law, to make environmental justice part of their mission 
by identifying and addressing, as appropriate, disproportionately high 
and adverse human health or environmental effects of their programs, 
policies, and activities on minority populations and low-income 
populations in the United States.
    The EPA has determined that this final rule will not have 
disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental 
effects on minority or low-income populations because it does not 
affect the level of protection provided to human health or the 
environment. This rule will relax the applicable volatility standard of 
gasoline during the summer possibly resulting in slightly higher mobile 
source emissions. However, Florida and North Carolina have demonstrated 
in maintenance plans that this action will not interfere with 
attainment of the 8-hour ozone NAAQS and therefore disproportionately 
high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority or 
low-income populations are not an anticipated result.

K. Congressional Review Act

    The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. section 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. The EPA will submit a report containing 
this rule and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. 
House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United 
States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A 
major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in 
the Federal Register. This action is not a major rule as defined by 5 
U.S.C. 804(2). This rule will be effective on May 30, 2014.

L. Petitions for Judicial Review

    Section 307(b)(1) of the CAA indicates which Federal Courts of 
Appeal have venue for petitions of review of final actions by the EPA. 
This section provides, in part, that petitions for review must be filed 
in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: (i) when 
the agency action consists of ``nationally applicable regulations 
promulgated, or final actions taken, by the Administrator,'' or (ii) 
when such action is locally or regionally applicable, if ``such action 
is based on a determination of nationwide scope or effect and if in 
taking such action the Administrator finds and publishes that such 
action is based on such a determination.''
    This rule is ``nationally applicable'' within the meaning of 
section 307(b)(1). This rule establishes RVP requirements for multiple 
counties in different States. At the core of this rulemaking is the 
EPA's interpretation of the requirements of section 211(h) of the CAA, 
and its application of that interpretation to different areas of the 
country.
    For the same reasons, the Administrator also is determining that 
this action is of nationwide scope and effect for the purposes of 
section 307(b)(1). This is particularly appropriate because, in the 
report on the 1977 Amendments that revised section 307(b)(1) of the 
CAA, Congress noted that the Administrator's determination that an 
action is of ``nationwide scope or effect'' would be appropriate for 
any action that has a scope or effect beyond a single judicial circuit. 
H.R. Rep. No. 95-294 at 323, 324, reprinted in 1977 U.S.C.C.A.N. 1402-
03. Here, the scope and effect of this rulemaking extends to two 
different judicial circuits. In these circumstances, section 307(b)(1) 
and its legislative history calls for the Administrator to find the 
rule to be of ``nationwide scope or effect'' and for venue to be in the 
D.C. Circuit.
    Thus, any petitions for review of final designations must be filed 
in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit within 60 
days from the date final action is published in the Federal Register. 
Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this 
final rule does not affect the finality of this action 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 may not be challenged 
later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. See section 
307(b)(2).

X. Legal Authority and Statutory Provisions

    Authority for this final action is in sections 211(h) and 301(a) of 
the CAA, 42 U.S.C. 7545(h) and 7601(a).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 80

    Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedures, 
Air pollution control, Fuel additives, Gasoline, Motor vehicle and 
motor vehicle engines, Motor vehicle pollution, Penalties, Reporting 
and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: May 15, 2014.
Gina McCarthy,
Administrator.
    Title 40, chapter I, part 80 of the Code of Federal Regulations is 
amended as follows:

PART 80--REGULATION OF FUELS AND FUEL ADDITIVES

0
1. The authority citation for part 80 continues to read as follows:

     Authority:  42 U.S.C. 7414, 7545 and 7601(a).


0
2. In Sec.  80.27(a)(2)(ii), the table is amended by:
0
a. Revising the entry for Florida;
0
b. Revising the entry for North Carolina; and
0
c. Adding footnotes 5, 6, and 7.

[[Page 29369]]

    The revisions and additions read as follows:


Sec.  80.27  Controls and prohibitions on gasoline volatility.

    (a) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (ii) * * *

                               Applicable Standards \1\ 1992 and Subsequent Years
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              State                     May            June            July           August         September
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Florida.........................             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0
Southeast Florida, Tampa Bay and             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0
 Jacksonville \5\...............
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
North Carolina
    Triad \6\...................             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0
    Triangle \7\................             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0             9.0
All other volatility                         9.0             7.8             7.8             7.8             7.8
 nonattainment areas............
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                  * * * * * * *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Standards are expressed in pounds per square inch (psi).
* * * * * * *
\5\ The standard for Broward, Dade, Duval, Hillsborough, Palm Beach and Pinellas Counties from June 1 until
  September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi.
\6\ The standard for Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford Counties and a portion of Davie County from June 1 until
  September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi.
\7\ The standard for Durham and Wake Counties, and a portion of Dutchville Township in Granville County from
  June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi.

* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2014-11911 Filed 5-21-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-P