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On December 1, 2014, the U.S. EPA announced reconsideration and proposed amendments to the Major Source and Area Source Boiler MACT rules.  EPA is requesting public comments on three proposed updates for the Major Source rule and five proposed updates for the Area Source rule.  EPA is also proposing some technical corrections to the Final Rules that were published on January 31, 2013 (Major Source rule) and February 1, 2013 Area Source rule). 

Major Source items for comment are as follows:

  1. Definition of and work practices during Startup and Shutdown
  2. Revising the CO emission limit based on a minimum CO level of 130 ppm
  3. Use of Particulate Matter Continuous Parameter Monitoring System (PM CPMS)

Area Source items for comment are as follows:

  1. Definition of Startup and Shutdown
  2. Alternative PM standard for new oil-fired boilers
  3. Separate requirements for limited-use boilers
  4. Performance testing for PM for certain boilers
  5. Provision for elimination fuel sampling of mercury for certain coal fired boilers.

What Does this Reconsideration Mean:

With the reconsideration, EPA is considering some alternatives and flexibilities that were proposed by the regulated community. However, EPA has suggested removal of the affirmative defense provisions based on the DC Circuit Court ruling in April 2014. This could be a concern with no fall back provisions for malfunction. 

EPA has not proposed extending the compliance dates including the Major Source compliance date for existing sources of January 2016. 

EPA is accepting comments for 45 days after the notice is published in the federal Register. EPA has Redline/Strikeout versions of the rule at is website.