4 The record articles

Boiler MACT Remand Request Granted!

Posted: May 22nd, 2014

Author: All4 Staff 

On February 28, 2014, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) requested a remand without vacatur of the set of rules commonly referred to as the Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) rules. U.S. EPA has also requested a remand of the Commercial and Industrial Solid Waste Incineration (CISWI) rules. On May 15, 2014 the remand request was granted to U.S. EPA by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit for both the Boiler MACT and CISWI rules.

So, what does this mean? It means that U.S. EPA has been granted 60 days to provide further explanation to the court on the use of the upper prediction limit (UPL) statistical method to set the emission standards for certain subcategories.  Refer to our previous posting for details on the UPL statistical method and affected categories. This remand only affects those categories where provisions were set using nine (9) or fewer data points.

The court has set a briefing schedule that begins on August 12, 2014 for industry and environmental plaintiffs to file briefs over the major source rule, continuing throughout the year with a final briefing deadline of January 21, 2015. The area source rule was also granted a remand with a briefing schedule beginning August 26, 2014 and ending February 4, 2015. 

The CISWI rules were also affected.  A 60-day remand was granted for more justification for the UPL used in setting the incinerator emissions standards.  The CISWI briefing schedule starts with September 18, 2014 and ends March 3, 2015.

Could this change the compliance schedule for the upcoming major source Boiler MACT rule? Possibly. However, remember that this is a remand without vacatur of the standards.  This remand only affects those categories that were set using the UPL approach.  If your boiler doesn’t fall into one of the categories, then you will want to continue with your Boiler MACT compliance strategy because the January 31, 2016 deadline for major sources will be here before you know it. If your boiler does fall into one of the UPL categories, you may want to take a temporary pause to see how this plays out. Remember though, should there be no change to the standards or the compliance schedule, time not spent on your compliance strategy could be time lost forever.


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