[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 135 (Monday, July 17, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 32673-32675]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-14939]



40 CFR Part 52

[EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0327; FRL-9964-96-Region 5]

Air Plan Approval; Minnesota; 2008 Ozone Transport

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Proposed rule.


SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to 
approve a May 26, 2016, State Implementation Plan (SIP) submission from 
Minnesota that is intended to demonstrate that the Minnesota SIP meets 
certain interstate transport requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA) 
for the 2008 ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). This 
submission addresses the requirement that each SIP contain adequate 
provisions prohibiting air emissions that will have certain adverse air 
quality effects in other states. EPA is proposing to approve this SIP 
as containing adequate provisions to ensure that Minnesota emissions do 
not significantly contribute to nonattainment or interfere with 
maintenance of the 2008 ozone NAAQS in any other state.

DATES: Comments must be received on or before August 16, 2017.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R05-
OAR-2016-0327 at https://www.regulations.gov or via email to 
[email protected]. For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, 
follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, 
comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either 
manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its 
public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you 
consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other 
information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia 
submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written 
comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and 
should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will 
generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of 
the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing 
system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person 
identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For the full 
EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia 
submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please 
visit https://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Eric Svingen, Environmental Engineer, 
Attainment Planning and Maintenance Section, Air Programs Branch (AR-
18J), Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson 
Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois 60604, (312) 353-4489, 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Throughout this document whenever ``we,'' 
``us,'' or ``our'' is used, we mean EPA. This supplementary information 
section is arranged as follows:

I. Background.
II. EPA's Analysis of Minnesota's Submittal
III. What action is EPA taking?
IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews.

I. Background

    On March 12, 2008, EPA revised the levels of the primary and 
secondary ozone standards from 0.08 parts per million (ppm) to 0.075 
ppm (73 FR 16436). The CAA requires states to submit, within three 
years after promulgation of a new or revised standard, SIPs meeting the 
applicable ``infrastructure'' elements of sections 110(a)(1) and (2). 
One of these applicable infrastructure elements, CAA section 
110(a)(2)(D)(i), requires SIPs to contain ``good neighbor'' provisions 
to prohibit certain adverse air quality effects on neighboring states 
due to interstate transport of pollution. There are four sub-elements 
within CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i). This action addresses the first two 
sub-elements of the good neighbor provisions, at CAA section 
110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I). These sub-elements require that each SIP for a new 
or revised standard contain adequate provisions to prohibit any source 
or other type of emissions activity within the state from emitting air 
pollutants that will ``contribute significantly to nonattainment'' or 
``interfere with maintenance'' of the applicable air quality standard 
in any other state.

II. EPA's Analysis of Minnesota's Submittals

    On May 26, 2016, the State of Minnesota submitted a revision to its 
SIP to address the first two sub-elements of the good neighbor 
provisions, at CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I). Specifically, 
Minnesota's submission asserts that the state's SIP contains adequate 
provisions to prohibit any source or other type of emissions activity 
within the state from emitting air pollutants that will ``contribute 
significantly to nonattainment'' or ``interfere with maintenance'' of 
the 2008 ozone standard in any other state. The SIP submission 
highlights rules and statutes already in Minnesota's SIP that limit 
emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOX) and volatile organic 
compounds (VOC), the precursor pollutants contributing to ozone 
formation. Minnesota primarily limits VOC emissions through emission 
limitations in state-issued part 70 permits. Minnesota has also 
incorporated by reference EPA's National Emission Standards for 
Hazardous Air Pollutants, which further limit VOC emissions. See Minn. 
R. 7011.7000-9990. Minnesota limits NOX emissions through 
application of Minn. R. 7011.0500-0553, ``Indirect Heating Fossil Fuel 
Burning Equipment,'' as well as Minn. R. 7011.1700-1705, ``Nitric Acid 
Plants.'' Additionally, an administrative order issued to the Xcel 
Energy Sherburne County Generating Station (Sherco) as part of 
Minnesota's Regional Haze SIP imposes additional limits on 
NOX emissions in Minnesota. Finally, Minnesota sources are 
also subject to a Federal Implementation Plan (FIP) for the Cross-State 
Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) at 40 CFR 52.1240, and are required to 
reduce annual emissions of NOX in support of the 2006 NAAQS 
for fine particulate matter (PM2.5).
    EPA developed technical information and a related analysis to 
assist states with meeting section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) requirements for 
the 2008 ozone NAAQS, and used this technical analysis to support the 
CSAPR Update for the 2008 Ozone NAAQS (``CSAPR Update'').\1\ As 
explained below, this analysis supports the conclusion of Minnesota's 
analysis regarding interstate transport for the 2008 ozone NAAQS.

    \1\ 81 FR 74504 (October 26, 2016).

    In the technical analysis supporting the CSAPR Update, EPA used 
detailed air quality analyses to determine where projected 
nonattainment or maintenance areas would be and whether emissions from 
a state would contribute to downwind air quality problems at those 
projected nonattainment or maintenance receptors. Specifically, EPA 
determined whether a state's contributing emissions were at or above a 
specific threshold (i.e., one percent of the ozone NAAQS).

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If a state's contribution did not exceed the one percent threshold, the 
state was not considered ``linked'' to identified downwind 
nonattainment and maintenance receptors and was therefore not 
considered to significantly contribute to nonattainment or interfere 
with maintenance of the standard in those downwind areas. If a state's 
contribution was equal to or exceeded the one percent threshold, that 
state was considered ``linked'' to the downwind nonattainment or 
maintenance receptor(s) and the state's emissions were further 
evaluated, taking into account both air quality and cost 
considerations, to determine what, if any, emissions reductions might 
be necessary to address the state's obligation pursuant to CAA section 
    As discussed in the CSAPR Update, the air quality modeling 
contained in EPA's technical analysis: (1) Identified locations in the 
U.S. where EPA anticipates nonattainment or maintenance issues in 2017 
for the 2008 ozone NAAQS (these are identified as nonattainment and 
maintenance receptors), and (2) quantified the projected contributions 
from emissions from upwind states to downwind ozone concentrations at 
the receptors in 2017. See CSAPR Update at 81 FR 74526. This modeling 
used the Comprehensive Air Quality Model with Extensions (CAMx version 
6.11) to model the 2011 base year, and the 2017 future base case 
emissions scenarios to identify projected nonattainment and maintenance 
sites with respect to the 2008 ozone NAAQS in 2017. EPA used nationwide 
state-level ozone source apportionment modeling (the CAMx Ozone Source 
Apportionment Technology/Anthropogenic Precursor Culpability Analysis 
technique) to quantify the contribution of 2017 base case 
NOX and VOC emissions from all sources in each state to the 
2017 projected receptors. The air quality model runs were performed for 
a modeling domain that covers the 48 contiguous states in the U.S. and 
adjacent portions of Canada and Mexico. Id. at 81 FR 74526-74527. The 
modeling data released to support the final CSAPR Update are the most 
up-to-date information EPA has developed to inform our analysis of 
upwind state linkages to downwind air quality problems for the 2008 
ozone NAAQS. See ``Air Quality Modeling TSD for the Final CSAPR 
Update'' in the docket for CSAPR Update at 81 FR 74504 for more details 
regarding EPA's modeling analysis.
    Consistent with the framework established in the original CSAPR 
rulemaking, EPA's technical analysis in support of the CSAPR Update 
applied a threshold of one percent of the 2008 ozone NAAQS of 75 ppb 
(0.75 ppb) to identify linkages between upwind states and the downwind 
nonattainment and maintenance receptors. See CSAPR Update, 81 FR 74518-
74519. EPA considered states to be ``linked'' to a specific downwind 
receptor if emissions from that state meet or exceed that one percent 
threshold. EPA analyzed emissions from those ``linked'' states to 
determine whether emissions reductions were required for purposes of 
CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I). EPA determined that one percent was an 
appropriate threshold to use in that analysis because there were 
important, even if relatively small, contributions to identified 
nonattainment and maintenance receptors from multiple upwind states at 
that threshold. In response to commenters who advocated a higher or 
lower threshold than one percent, EPA compiled the contribution 
modeling results for the CSAPR Update to analyze the impact of 
different possible thresholds for the eastern United States. EPA's 
analysis showed that the one percent threshold captures a high 
percentage of the total pollution transport affecting downwind states. 
EPA's analysis further showed that application of a lower threshold 
would result in relatively modest increases in the overall percentage 
of ozone transport pollution captured, while the use of higher 
thresholds would result in a relatively large reduction in the overall 
percentage of ozone pollution transport captured relative to the levels 
captured at one percent at the majority of the receptors. Id.; see also 
Air Quality Modeling Final Rule Technical Support Document for the 
Final CSAPR Update, Appendix F, Analysis of Contribution Thresholds. 
This approach is consistent with the use of a one percent threshold to 
identify those states ``linked'' to air quality problems with respect 
to the 1997 ozone NAAQS in the original CSAPR rulemaking, wherein EPA 
noted that there are adverse health impacts associated with ambient 
ozone even at low levels. 76 FR 48208, 48236-48237 (August 8, 2011).
    EPA's air quality modeling for the final CSAPR Update projects that 
Minnesota emissions are projected to contribute amounts less than one 
percent of the 2008 ozone NAAQS to all receptors. The modeling 
indicates that Minnesota's largest contribution to any projected 
downwind nonattainment site is 0.40 ppb and Minnesota's largest 
contribution to any projected downwind maintenance-only site is 0.47 
ppb. 80 FR 46271, 46277 (August 4, 2015). These values are below the 
one percent screening threshold of 0.75 ppb, and therefore there are no 
identified linkages between Minnesota and 2017 downwind projected 
nonattainment and maintenance sites. In Minnesota's submission, the 
state provides data demonstrating that statewide NOX and VOC 
emissions have been decreasing in recent years. This indicates that 
existing controls have been sufficient in meeting Minnesota's transport 
obligations for ozone. This further suggests that Minnesota will likely 
continue to have insignificant contributions to downwind nonattainment 
and maintenance problems for ozone.
    EPA agrees with the state's technical information and conclusion. 
EPA's modeling also confirms this finding. Based on the modeling data 
and the information and analysis provided in Minnesota's SIP, we are 
proposing to approve Minnesota's interstate transport SIP for purposes 
of meeting the CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) requirements as to the 
2008 ozone standard. EPA's modeling confirms the results of the state's 
analysis: Minnesota does not significantly contribute to nonattainment 
or interfere with maintenance of the 2008 ozone standard in any other 

III. What action is EPA taking?

    EPA is proposing to approve Minnesota's interstate transport SIP 
for purposes of meeting the CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) requirements 
of the 2008 ozone standard.

IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP 
submission that complies with the provisions of the CAA and applicable 
Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in 
reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, 
provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this 
action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and 
does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state 
law. For that reason, this action:
     Is not a significant regulatory action subject to review 
by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 12866 (58 
FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);
     Does not impose an information collection burden under the 
provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);

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     Is 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.);
     Does 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);
     Does not have Federalism implications as specified in 
Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
     Is not an economically significant regulatory action based 
on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 
19885, April 23, 1997);
     Is not a significant regulatory action subject to 
Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
     Is not subject to 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 CAA; and
     Does 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, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian 
reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has 
demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian 
country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose 
substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as 
specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

    Dated: July 6, 2017.
Cheryl L. Newton,
Acting Regional Administrator, Region 5.
[FR Doc. 2017-14939 Filed 7-14-17; 8:45 am]