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On April 13, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the revisions to the State Implementation Plan (SIP) submitted on July 10, 2015 by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). EPA published a proposal for approval of the SIP revisions on December 21, 2015, which has been finalized following the required public comment period. These finalized rule changes affect Title 30 Texas Administrative Code (30 TAC), Chapter 117, Control of Air Pollution from Nitrogen Compounds (NOx) and are intended to assist the Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) moderate nonattainment area (NAA) in attaining the 2008 eight-hour ozone (O3) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).

The Chapter 117 rule changes implement NOx RACT requirements for all major sources of NOx in the DFW area, including Wise County. Owners or operators of any gas-fired engine, gas-fired turbine, or gas-fired process heater located at major sources in Wise County have to comply with the same NOx RACT requirements as the other nine counties in the DFW 2008 eight-hour nonattainment area. In addition, the Chapter 117 rule changes implement RACT for major sources of NOx in the DFW 2008 eight-hour ozone nonattainment area that are not addressed by the current Chapter 117 rules. For owners and operators of boilers and process heaters used on a temporary basis, the approved rulemaking provides compliance flexibility to affected units in all areas covered by Chapter 117. The Chapter 117 revisions also include other changes that are not required to satisfy NOx RACT requirements, such as revoking an exemption for utility turbines and auxiliary steam boilers installed after November 15, 1992 in the DFW area, clarifying definitions, removing obsolete sections of Chapter 117 (Subchapter B, Division 2, and Subchapter C, Division 2, as more stringent rules in Subchapter B, Division 4 and Subchapter C, Division 4, respectively, are applicable); and revising other non-substantive items.

The revised Chapter 117 rules will be officially in effect on May 13, 2016. Compliance for affected sources of the new RACT requirements in Chapter 117 is required by January 1, 2017. Contact Trinity Consultants at (800) 229-6655 with further questions or concerns.