State-by-State Status Report on NSR Reform Implementation: Who is Allowing What, and When?
The petroleum refining industry anticipated significant benefit from the flexibility and certainty available in the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD)/New Source Review (NSR) Permitting Reform rule published by U.S. EPA on December 31, 2002. However, the timing and implementation of the PSD/NSR Reform rule depends on the approval status of each state’s PSD/NSR permitting program. States with “delegated” PSD/NSR programs generally began implementing the rules on the effective date of the Federal rule revisions (March 3, 2003). However, the vast majority of states where petroleum refineries operate implement the Federal PSD/NSR permitting requirements through an EPA-approved state implementation plan (SIP Approved). These “SIP Approved” states have essentially a 3-year window, until January 2, 2006, to adopt and submit revisions to their SIP permitting program to the U.S. EPA. As a result of this timeframe and ongoing legal challenges from several Northeastern states and environmental groups, many SIP Approved states have adopted a “wait-and-see” approach to Reform rule implementation. This paper provides a status report on the PSD/NSR Reform implementation efforts and progress in 20 states where the majority of refineries operate (excluding California). Issues such as the schedule for NSR Reform rule adoption, state agency attitude toward the Reform rule, and Reform-type flexibility within existing state PSD permitting programs are addressed.