FINAL RULE TO APPROVE CALIFORNIA'S AEROSOL COATING PRODUCTS REACTIVITY-BASED REGULATION AND REVISE EPA'S DEFINITION OF VOLATILE ORGANIC COMPOUND
- On September 2, 2005, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule approving a new regulation into California's State Implementation Plan (SIP). The regulation, known as California's Aerosol Coating Products reactivity-based regulation, targets air emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The final rule is available at: http://www.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg/t1pfpr.html.
- EPA is also approving the use of the California Air Resources Board's (CARB) Tables of Maximum Incremental Reactivity to implement the Aerosol Coating Products regulation in California.
- EPA is revising its definition of VOCs to include compounds previously identified as negligibly reactive and excluded from our definition of VOCs, to support California's reactivity-based regulation.
- VOCs contribute significantly to the formation of ground-level ozone (smog). Exposure to ground-level ozone can cause serious respiratory illness.
- This action is designed to help California's efforts to meet the national ambient air quality standards for ground-level ozone and give manufacturers greater reformulation options.
- Under the Clean Air Act, EPA has a number of responsibilities to protect public health and the environment from the harm caused by air pollution. These responsibilities include setting national ambient air quality standards for the six criteria pollutants including ozone. States develop plans, known as State Implementation Plans (SIP), to show how they will maintain emissions to a level consistent with these national ambient air quality standards.
- California's Aerosol Coating Products reactivity-based regulation is based on the fact that some VOCs are more photochemically reactive than others. That is, the same weight/amount of some VOCs (e.g., xylene) could form more ozone or form ozone more quickly than the same weight/amount of other VOCs (e.g., propane) once they are emitted into the air under the same conditions.
- CARB's reactivity-based regulation places a limit on the projected contribution an aerosol coating has to ozone formation. Therefore, if a manufacturer has a choice of using two different VOCs in formulating their product, CARB's regulation is intended to encourage the use of the VOC that forms less ozone over the VOC that forms more ozone under the same environmental conditions.
- EPA carefully reviewed all submitted information and considered all public comments before making the final decision to approve CARB's regulation into the SIP.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
- Interested parties can download the rule from EPA's web site on the Internet under "recent actions" at the following address: http://www.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg/ . For further information about the rule, contact Stanley Tong at EPA Region IX's Rulemaking Office at (415) 947-4122.
- EPA's Office of Air and Radiation's home page on the Internet contains a wide range of information on the air pollution programs. The Office of Air and Radiation's home page address is: http://www.epa.gov/oar/.