Depending on the type of permit under which your facility operates, you may be required to periodically renew the permit for it to remain effective. The differing deadlines for renewal application submissions across these programs can be somewhat confusing.

Major Sources in Illinois are required to have a Title V (Part 70) Operating Permit and are permitted under the Clean Air Act Permit Program (CAAPP). CAAPP permits expire every five (5) years. However, if a timely and complete application to renew the CAAPP permit has been submitted, the terms and conditions of the current CAAPP permit will remain in effect until the issuance of a renewal permit [per 415 ILCS 5/39.5(5)(l) and (o)]. For a renewal application to be timely, it must be submitted no later than nine (9) months prior to the date of permit expiration. Submission of a timely and complete application may be critical as the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) often needs more than nine (9) months to issue a renewal CAAPP permit.

A Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit (FESOP) is available on a voluntary basis for sources subject to the Clean Air Act Permit Program (CAAPP). A source can choose to apply for a FESOP permit if it's potential to emit triggers CAAPP requirements but the actual emissions are below or are restricted to be below the major source thresholds. As with CAAPP permits, the FESOP permit involves public notice and has conditions that are enforceable by the US EPA. FESOP permits expire either five (5) or ten (10) years from the date of issuance. There is some conflicting and ambiguous language in the Illinois Administrative Code (IAC) and the Illinois Compiled Statutes (ILCS) concerning the deadline for a timely FESOP renewal application. Based on interpretation of these regulations and discussions with IEPA, Trinity believes that a facility is required to submit a FESOP renewal 90 days before the expiration of the permit. However, the IEPA may suggest that a renewal application be submitted 180 days prior to expiration of the permit.

Sources whose unrestricted potential to emit falls below major sources thresholds qualify for an Illinois Lifetime Operating Permits. These "lifetime" permits do not expire or require renewal unless specifically requested by the IEPA. Such operating permits shall expire 180 days after the date of such a request [as specified in 415 ILCS 5/39(a)].

For those sources that entered the Registration for Smaller Sources (ROSS) program renewal is required annually. Payment of the annual invoice provided by the IEPA is verification by the owner or operator that the source continues to comply with the applicability criteria.   Sources are eligible for renewal into the ROSS program provided that the previous calendar year actual emissions are below the following:

  • the sum of combined Particulate Matter (PM), Carbon Dioxide (CO), Nitrogen Dioxide (NOx), Sulfur Dioxide (SO2), and Volatile Organic Material (VOM) annual emissions is less than 7 tons, OR
  • the total from the prior two years is less than 10 tons; AND
    the aggregate HAP actual emissions remain below the 0.5 tons/calendar year;
  • the mercury actual emissions remain below the 0.05 tons/calendar year; and
    the lead actual emissions remain below 0.05 ton/calendar year. 

Additional details on all of the operating permit programs in Illinois can be found on the IEPA Bureau of Air website.