On September 4, 2020 the executive director of Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) recommended withdrawal of a portion of the Beaumont-Port Arthur (BPA) area One-Hour Ozone Redesignation Request and Maintenance Plan State Implementation Plan (SIP) (Non-Rule Project No. 2020-39-SIP-NR). The TCEQ commission will consider the agenda item request on September 25, 2020. This action would withdraw from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) review, a portion of the BPA Redesignation Request and Maintenance Plan for the One-Hour Ozone Standard and Second 10-Year Maintenance Plan for the 1997 Eight-Hour Ozone Standard SIP Revision, as adopted by the commission on January 30, 2019 (2018-1318-SIP). The portion under consideration for withdrawal concerns the state's redesignation request and maintenance plan for the 1979 one-hour ozone standard.
The one-hour ozone redesignation request and maintenance plan for the BPA area (Hardin, Jefferson, and Orange Counties) was submitted to EPA on February 5, 2019. The SIP revision included a request that EPA re-designate the BPA area to attainment for the revoked 1979 one-hour ozone standard along with a plan to provide for maintenance of the one-hour ozone standard in the BPA area through 2032. On June 8, 2020, the EPA proposed partial approval of the BPA SIP revision but stated that it would not address the one-hour ozone standard portion of the submittal (85 Federal Register (FR) 35041). EPA has taken the position that the agency lacks the authority to re-designate areas to attainment under revoked standards. Therefore, TCEQ staff recommends withdrawing the one-hour ozone redesignation request and maintenance plan for the BPA area.
If approved by the commission, the one-hour ozone redesignation request and maintenance plan portion of the previously submitted SIP revision would be withdrawn from the EPA's consideration.
We will monitor the progress of this proposal and share more relevant information. If you have questions or need further EHS compliance assistance, please contact your local Trinity Texas office.