The Toolkit contains implementation information on the Hazardous Waste Combustion (HWC) NESHAP (40 CFR Part 63, Subpart EEE) for the general public, regulators and the regulated community. The Toolkit's primary focus is on general and process-oriented information, including:
- RCRA and CAA permitting requirements and policies
- Transition of air emission requirements from RCRA to CAA
- Delegation of federal requirements to state agencies
- Implementation time line and important milestones
- Checklists and guidelines
- Universe of affected facilities or sources
- Links to other useful websites
- RCRA and CAA regulatory contacts
- Commonly used acronyms
The Toolkit does not provide guidance on specific technical requirements such as test methods or monitoring techniques.
Since 1970, the Clean Air Act (CAA) has provided the primary framework for protecting people and the environment from the harmful effects of air pollution. A key component of CAA is a requirement that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) significantly reduce the emissions of the most dangerous air pollutants - those that are known or suspected to cause serious health problems such as cancer or birth defects. We refer to these pollutants as hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), but they are also commonly referred to as toxic air pollutants or air toxics.
Prior to 1990, CAA required EPA to set standards for each HAP on an individual basis according to its particular health risk. These standards were termed the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). The chemical-by-chemical approach for setting the standards proved difficult, however, and resulted in NESHAP for only seven toxic air pollutants. Accordingly, in the 1990 amendments to CAA, Congress directed EPA to replace the original approach with one based on what technology could currently achieve. Congress further required that the technology-based approach be followed by a risk-based approach to address any remaining, or residual, risks.
In response, we revised our approach for setting NESHAP from a chemical-by-chemical approach to one that is based on the "maximum achievable control technology" (MACT) for each industry group or source category. Under this revised approach, the standards for each industry group are based on the emission levels that are already being achieved by the better-controlled and lower-emitting sources within the group.
For the hazardous waste combustion source category, we are developing the HWC NESHAP in two phases. The first phase addressed hazardous waste burning incinerators, cement kilns and lightweight aggregate kilns. The second phase will address hazardous waste burning industrial boilers, process heaters and hydrochloric acid production furnaces.
On September 30, 1999, we published the Phase 1 HWC NESHAP (64 FR 52828). We promulgated the rule under the joint authority of CAA and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Before this rule went into effect, we regulated air emissions from hazardous waste burning incinerators, cement kilns and lightweight aggregate kilns primarily under the authority of section 3004(a) of RCRA. We now regulate the air emissions from these sources under the CAA. Although both statutes continue to give us the authority to regulate emissions from these sources, we determined that it would be duplicative to have emission standards and permitting requirements in both RCRA and CAA regulations, with one exception. Section 3005(c)(3) of RCRA requires that each RCRA permit contain the terms and conditions necessary to protect human health and the environment. Under this provision of RCRA, if a regulatory authority determines that more stringent conditions than the HWC NESHAP are necessary to protect human health and environment for a particular facility, then that regulatory authority may impose those conditions in the facility's RCRA permit. For the most current version of the Phase 1 HWC NESHAP regulations, you may access the electronic Code of Federal Regulations.
Since 1999 we have issued several technical corrections and amendments to the Phase 1 NESHAP to improve its implementation. We have also revised specific sections in response to the July 2000 vacatur ordered by the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit regarding the Notice of Intent to Comply, Compliance Progress Report, and Early Cessation provisions. In addition, we made further changes, most notably to the promulgation of interim standards, due to a second court order issued in July 2001.
With respect to the Phase 2 HWC NESHAP, we plan to publish the final regulation in June 2005 concurrently with replacement standards for Phase 1.