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Pacific Southwest, Region 9

Serving: Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Pacific Islands, Tribal Nations

Air Actions, Arizona

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Cleaner Burning Gasoline

On January 26, 2004, EPA's regional administrator signed a Federal Register notice approving five State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions submitted by the state in February 1999, March 2001, August 2001, September 2001, and January 2004, to modify its Cleaner Burning Gasoline (CBG) program. The modified state rules apply to gasoline distributed in the Maricopa County ozone, CO and PM-10 nonattainment areas, including small portions of Pinal and Yavapai Counties. Arizona developed and modified these fuel requirements to reduce emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), oxides of nitrogen (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO), and particulates (PM-10). EPA is approving Arizona's modified fuel requirements into the Arizona SIP since the state was able to show that these requirements are beneficial to air quality and do not impede the state's attainment of the ozone standard.

We received mostly positive public comments on the rule proposed in September of 2003, including one from the Western States Petroleum Association, and one adverse comment from the Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest. We have responded to the comments and are finalizing our action. In addition, our proposed action in late September was perceived by some as banning MTBE in Arizona, which is not the case. The Arizona legislature would have to act in order for an MTBE ban to be put in place, although this action does lay the groundwork for an MTBE ban.

Specifically, EPA approved, among other changes, the following changes to Arizona's gasoline program:

  • replace Arizona ’s interim CBG program with a permanent program,
  • amend the wintertime CBG program to limit the types of gasoline that may be supplied, and
  • remove the minimum oxygen content requirement for summertime gasoline.

The cleaner burning gasoline program is one of many measures developed by the state and local community to clean the air in Phoenix. The Phoenix area is currently designated as a serious nonattainment area for ozone, carbon monoxide, and airborne particulates, although the area has been reporting clean data for ozone and CO since 1997. Upon receipt of and action on maintenance plans for each pollutant, EPA will be able to redesignate the Phoenix area to attainment for CO and ozone. Motor vehicles are the single largest source of air pollution in the Valley.

Related Documents

Contact Information

Wienke Tax (tax.wienke@epa.gov)
Office of Air Planning
EPA Region 9
(415) 947-4192

Previous Actions

On January 23, 1998, EPA's regional administrator, signed a Federal Register notice taking final action approving a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision submitted by the State of Arizona on September 15, 1997, establishing Cleaner Burning Gasoline (CBG) fuel requirements for gasoline distributed in the Phoenix (Maricopa County) ozone nonattainment area. Arizonadeveloped these fuel requirements to reduce emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC), oxides of nitrogen (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO) and particulates (PM10). EPA approved Arizona's fuel requirements into the Arizona SIP since the requirements were necessary for the Phoenix area to attain the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulates.

Below are links to EPA's Fact Sheet on the finding, the proposed and final rulemakings, and links to additional sites for further information. The proposed rule was published in the Federal Register on November 20, 1997. EPA received four comment letters in support of the action. Responses to the technical comments raised by the commenters were included in the final rulemaking, which was pubished in the Federal Register on February 10, 1998. EPA published a separate notice approving Arizona's opt-out from the federal reformulated gasoline program, effective 90 after the effective date of this final rulemaking.

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