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Technology Transfer Network - OAR Policy and Guidance

OAR Policy and Guidance Metarecord

Document Title/Subject:
Potential to Emit, Memo and Guidance
Related Documents:
See several attached files
Signed by: John Seitz and Robert Van Huevelen

Signature Date: January 25, 1995

Tim Smith Information Transfer and Program Integration Division (OAQPS)



Regulatory Authority:
Title 5
Information Transfer and Program Integration Division (OAQPS)
Submitted By:
Document Type:
Policy & Guidance Memos
EPA Document Number:

Federal Register:
Subject Category:
Environmental Protection Agency
Operating Permits
Hazardous air pollutants
Clean Air Act
This 1/25/95 memo and its five attachments, address a number of issues related to the term "potential to emit (PTE)."

First, the memo, and several of the attachments, clarify how various types of State permits and rules can create federally-enforceable limits for criteria pollutants and hazardous air pollutants. [Note that this memo predates a July 1995 court decision challenging EPA's requirement that only federally-enforceable limits can be credited towards a source's PTE.]

Second, the memo touches on issues related to the "practical enforceability" of limits. Issues related to practical enforceability of general permits and prohibitory rules are discussed in greater detail in Attachment 4.

Third, the memo introduced an EPA effort to address the regulatory term "maximum capacity," and that EPA would be addressing whether some source types have "inherent constraints" on their capacity. [Note: EPA did, in fact, follow up on this point by issuing later policy memos dealing with emergency generators (9/6/95), grain handling facilities (11/14/95), and batch chemical plants (8/29/96)].

Finally, the memo created a 2-year transition policy to give States more time to issue federally-enforceable limits to sources seeking minor source status. The transition policy allowed States the discretion to treat as minor sources those with:
(1) State enforceable limits that meet a practical enforceability test, or
(2) have actual emissions less than 50% of the major source threshold.
[Note: This 2-year period was later extended in an 8/27/96 policy memo.]

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