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Small Entities and Rulemaking

SBAR Panel #42 - Petroleum Refinery Sector Risk and Technology Review and New Source Performance Standards

Key Dates and Documents for this SBAR Panel

  • Convening Date: 08/04/2011
  • Completion Date: Not yet determined

About the Rule

About this SBAR Panel

What is the Implication of the Rulemaking on Small Entities?

EPA first regulated petroleum refineries in 1974 when the agency issued the New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) (40 CFR part 60, subpart J) to control criteria air pollutants. The NSPS applies to refinery process units that commenced construction, reconstruction, or modification after June 11, 1973, but before May 14, 2007. On June 24, 2008, EPA amended the NSPS and issued new standards for process units constructed, reconstructed, or modified after May 14, 2007 (NSPS Ja). EPA was petitioned to reconsider these final rules and on September 26, 2008, EPA granted reconsideration and issued a stay for the issues raised in the petitions. On December 22, 2008, EPA responded to the petitions by proposing amendments and technical corrections to the rules. On December 29, 2009, EPA granted reconsideration of all remaining issues that were raised in the petitions for administrative reconsideration, including the failure to regulate greenhouse gases (GHGs). Therefore, in this action, EPA plans to:

  • Address the remaining NSPS issues under reconsideration, including the regulation of greenhouse gases and the development of emission guidelines for existing sources. In addition, there are a number of other NSPS rules that affect the refining sector that will be addressed in this rulemaking.

EPA also developed two Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) standards to control hazardous air pollutants (HAP) that apply specifically to the Petroleum Refining Sector. These are codified in 40 CFR 63, Subpart CC (National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants From Petroleum refineries) and 40 CFR 63, Subpart UUU (National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Petroleum Refineries: Catalytic Cracking Units, Catalytic Reforming Units, and Sulfur Recovery Units). These standards are referred to as MACT 1 and 2 and were issued in 1995 and 2002.

EPA is required to perform risk and technology reviews (RTR) to assess residual risk within eight years of promulgation of MACT standards and to review advancements in HAP emissions control technologies within eight years of the promulgation of the standards and every eight years thereafter. EPA conducted these reviews concurrently and proposed RTR amendments for MACT 1 in 2007 and attempted to finalize them on January 16, 2009, but later proposed to withdraw them due to insufficient emissions information. We are now in the process of gathering data through an industry wide information collection request (ICR) to perform RTR analyses. Therefore, in this action, EPA will also:

  • Perform RTR analyses for both MACT 1 and 2. The residual risk review will examine lifetime cancer risks and non-cancer effects from both chronic and acute inhalation exposures. We will also examine the effects of persistent, bioaccumulative (PB) HAP from routes other than inhalation (e.g., ingestion of HAP that enter the food chain through deposition) if significant quantities of PB HAP are emitted, and will evaluate environmental effects. The technology review will be conducted to identify any new practices, processes, or control technologies for the industry and cost- effective emission control options. EPA is developing uniform standards for some emission sources in the petroleum refining sector that may serve as the basis for these technology reviews.
  • Review the standards and rule provisions to determine whether other changes may be needed during periods of start-up, shutdown, and malfunction to ensure the standards are consistent with recent court opinions and other CAA programs.

EPA must perform all activities described above by the settlement agreement proposal date of December 10, 2011 and promulgation date of November 10, 2012.

The proposed rule will affect entities in the petroleum refining sector.

How Can I Learn More?

If you are a small entity in any of the industry sectors described above in the "What is the Implication of the Proposed Rulemaking on Small Entities" section, you may be affected by this rulemaking. While the opportunity to participate on this Panel has passed, you will have the chance to submit comments concerning this rulemaking during the standard public comment period commencing after publication of the notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register.

Monthly updates about the rulemaking are available on the rule's profile page on Reg DaRRT. From this page, you can determine when the propsed rule will publish and, thus, when you will have an opportunity to comment on the rulemaking.

Semiannual updates about the development status of the rulemaking are available on:

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