On January 5, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) released its final action to partially approve and disapprove the Texas 2009 Regional Haze State Implementation Plan (SIP) and the Oklahoma 2010 Regional Haze SIP. You can view the document here.
With respect to Texas, EPA's Federal Implementation Plan (FIP) implements sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission limits on fifteen units at coal-fired electric generating units (EGUs) in Texas to assist in improving visibility and reducing regional haze at the two Texas National Parks (Big Bend and Guadalupe Mountains) as well as Oklahoma's Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge. In addition, with this FIP, EPA (1) finalized its approval of Texas' determination that none of the state's Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART)-eligible non-electric generating units (EGUs) sources are subject to BART, (2) did not finalize its proposed action to rely on the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) for nitrogen oxide (NOx) and SO2 reductions for the Texas' BART-eligible EGU sources, and (3) did not finalize its proposal to approve Texas' determination of no BART particulate matter (PM) controls for its EGUs.
With respect to Oklahoma, EPA asserts that Oklahoma did not have adequate information to establish its reasonable progress goal for the Wichita Mountains, and should have requested that Texas further investigate additional reductions from Texas sources to ensure that all reasonable measures to improve visibility were included in Texas' long term strategy.
The actions on these SIPs may re-open the door on certain aspects of BART/regional haze in both Texas and Oklahoma.
Trinity is very active in the Texas and Oklahoma FIPs including conducting visibility assessments using the CALPUFF Modeling system and control scenario evaluations, as well as regional modeling using the Comprehensive Air-quality Model with extensions (CAMx). We will be watching the regulations closely in anticipation of proposed actions for sites in Texas related to CSAPR and BART PM controls for EGUs. We will be following future actions as related to regional haze in Texas and Oklahoma and will provide an update when information is received. In the meantime, please call the Trinity Dallas office should you have any questions at (972) 661-8100.