Fact Sheet - Direct Final Rule and Parallel Proposal for Two Optional Mercury (Hg) Emissions Test Methods
- On August 17, 2007, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a direct final rule to add two methods for measuring mercury (Hg) emissions at coal-fired power plants. The direct final rule also includes several amendments related to mercury monitoring provisions at coal-fired power plants.
- This action would amend the testing and monitoring requirements for mercury specified in the Clean Air Mercury Rule (CAMR) on May 18, 2005 (70 FR 28606). CAMR established nationwide requirements to significantly reduce mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants.
- Today’s action would add Methods 30A and 30B to the list of approved techniques for measuring mercury emissions under CAMR. The additional methods can measure mercury as well as the test methods required by the promulgated rule.
- If approved, the action will give coal-fired power plants built since January 2004 four methods to choose from when measuring mercury emissions. The power plant doing the testing can choose which of the four methods to use.
- The action would not affect the anticipated emission reductions, costs or burdens associated with the monitoring requirements in the CAMR.
- EPA is publishing this as both a direct final rule and proposed rule. The Agency views the action as noncontroversial amendments and does not anticipate adverse comments. However, if EPA receives significant adverse comments on these changes, EPA will address the comments in a subsequent final rule based on the parallel proposal issued in conjunction with the direct final rule.
- These direct final rule technical amendments will be effective 60 days after publication of the direct final rule in the Federal Register.
- CAMR established “standards of performance” limiting mercury emissions from new and existing coal-fired power plants and created a market-based cap-and-trade program to reduce nationwide utility emissions of mercury in two phases.
- Today’s action is in response to requests EPA received to add the mercury measurement methods to the CAMR. EPA reviewed the comments, evaluated the methods, and agreed that the methods can be used in place of or in addition to the original methods outlined in the rule.
- Mercury is a toxic air pollutant that can bioaccumulate in the body and is known to cause damage to the nervous system. Mercury is also associated with serious neurological damage to the body.
HOW TO COMMENT
- EPA will accept public comments for 30 days after the direct final action and parallel proposal are published in the Federal Register.
- Comments should be identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2007 -0164 and submitted by one of the following methods:
- Federal eRulemaking Portal (http://www.regulations.gov)
- e-mail (email@example.com)
- Mail (EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail code 6102T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20460), or
- Hand delivery (EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC).
FOR MORE INFORMATION
- To download a copy of the rule, go to EPA's Worldwide Web site at: http://www.epa.gov/camr/rule.htm#aug07.
- For further information about the direct final action, contact William Grimley of EPA’s Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards by phone at (919) 541-1065 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; or Robin Segall of EPA's Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards by phone at (919) 541-0893 or by email at email@example.com.