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EPA Greenhouse Gas Emissions Regulatory Power Limited by Supreme Court, and More

Updated: Jul 21


ENVIRONMENTAL COMPLIANCE


Federal


Supreme Court Limits Power of EPA, Regulatory Agencies for Greenhouse Gas Emissions June 30, 2022


The U.S. Supreme Court issued a long-anticipated ruling on June 30, 2022, regarding the authority of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal agencies to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. In my opinion, in West Virginia et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency et al. (Case No. 20-1530), the Supreme Court ruled that EPA had exceeded the authority granted by Congress under the Clean Air Act in issuing limits on greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.


Source: EPA


Proposed Revisions and Confidentiality Determinations for Data Elements Under The Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule

June 21, 2022


EPA is proposing to amend specific provisions in the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule to improve the quality and consistency of the data collected under the rule, streamline and improve implementation, and clarify or propose minor updates to certain provisions that have been the subject of questions from reporting entities. These proposed changes include revisions to improve the existing calculation, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements by incorporating updates to existing emissions estimation methodologies and providing for the collection of additional data to understand new source categories or new emission sources for specific sectors. EPA is also proposing revisions that would improve the implementation of the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule such as updates to applicability estimation methodologies, providing flexibility for or simplifying calculation and monitoring methodologies, streamlining recordkeeping and reporting, and other minor technical corrections or clarifications. Additionally, the proposed rule establishes and amends confidentiality determinations for the reporting of certain data elements to be added or substantially revised.  


Source: EPA


Spring Regulatory Agenda

June 21, 2022


The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) just released the Spring 2022 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and De-regulatory Actions. The semi-annual Agenda details new regulations that Federal agencies like US EPA, US DOT, and OSHA have planned for the near future.


Source: EPA, DOT, OSHA


Frequently Asked Questions About Large Quantity Generator Quick Reference

Guides

April 19, 2022


In April, EPA published RO 14943, which answers frequently asked questions and clarifies RCRA regulations for the quick reference guide (QRG) provisions of the contingency plan requirements for large quantity generators (LQGs) in 40 CFR 262, Subpart M. The QRG provisions were added to the federal regulations by the 2016 hazardous waste generator improvements rule. [81 FR 85732] The new guidance answers over a dozen questions on the QRG


Source: EPA


EPA Issues Health Advisories for PFOA, PFOS, GenX Chemicals, and PFBS

June 15, 2022


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), on June 15, 2022, issued four-lifetime health advisories for several per- and polyfluroroalkyl substances (PFAS).


Source: Holland & Knight


Environmental Protection Agency Proposes Revised Clean Water Act Regulation

June 9, 2022


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a proposed rule, anticipated to take effect in Spring 2023, to revise the requirements for water quality certification under the Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 401. The proposed rule changes both the time in which certifying states and tribes must take action and what factors they may consider. The EPA will hold a virtual public hearing on July 18, 2022, and is accepting comments until Aug. 8, 2022.


Source: Holland & Knight


EPA Proposes Amendments to NESHAP for Miscellaneous Coating Manufacturing

June 8, 2022


EPA is proposing to amend the NESHAP for Miscellaneous Coating Manufacturing (MCM NESHAP) facilities (40 CFR part 63 Subpart HHHHH) to include hazardous air pollutant (HAP) standards for process vessels in order to complete the required technology review that was originally promulgated on August 14, 2020 (85 FR 49724).


Source: EPA


Texas


TCEQ Air Quality Technical Information Meeting for Houston-Galveston-Brazoria Nonattainment Area

June 28, 2022


The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) will hold an air quality (AQ) technical information meeting (TIM) in the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria (HGB), nonattainment area. The purpose of the meeting is to inform stakeholders of air quality modeling and other technical information relevant to the HGB ozone nonattainment area. The scheduled date and time of the HGB AQ TIM is July 28, 2022, from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm.


Source: TCEQ


Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is Now Inviting Comments on The Texas Clean Fleet Program

June 14, 2022


The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Texas Clean Fleet Program (TCFP) provides grants to encourage a person that has a fleet of diesel-powered vehicles to replace them with alternative fuel or hybrid vehicles. The program summary for the upcoming TCFP grant round can be found on the TCFP website. TCEQ requests comments on these no later than June 27, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. CST.


Final requirements for TCFP projects will be published in the TCFP Request for Grant Applications (RFGA) upon the opening of the program.

Submit comments to: terp@tceq.texas.gov


Source: TCEQ


Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan Template for MSGP Facilities

June 14, 2022


FREE is good! TCEQ's Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) Template for the Multi-Sector General Permit is now available.


Source: TCEQ


TCEQ Announcement on Permit by Rule Incomplete Process

June 3, 2022


Effective July 1, 2022, the TCEQ may not accept registrations submitted for Permits by Rule §106.261 and §106.262 if the accompanying workbook is not included with the submittal.

Effective September 1, 2022, the TCEQ may not accept Permit by Rule registrations that do not include Table 1(a) or equivalent emission summary table, emission calculations, or a process/project description. If registration is not accepted, the company will be notified, and the registration can be resubmitted within six months at no additional cost.


Source: TCEQ


TCEQ: New Readily Available Permit (RAP) for Power Generation Engines

June 1, 2022


The Air Permits Division has released a new Readily Available Permit (RAP) for power generation engines. This RAP can be used to authorize an NSR initial action for the operation of up to ten diesel-fired engines and up to ten associated diesel storage tanks for the purpose of power generation at a new or existing site.


Source: TCEQ


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HEALTH & SAFETY COMPLIANCE


USPS Revises Publication 52 HazMat Postal Regulations

June 6, 2022


The US Postal Service has revised the regulations for mailing hazardous materials, including some electronic devices containing or packed with lithium batteries.


Effective immediately, the USPS Publication 52 standards for Hazardous, Restricted, and Perishable Mail are revised as follows:


Shippers/mailers must separate hazardous materials requiring marks or labels from other mail. The mailing of pre-owned, damaged, or defective electronic devices containing (or packed with) lithium batteries is restricted to surface transportation only. Specific markings are required on mail containing lithium batteries in or with pre-owned, damaged, or defective electronic devices. The Interim Final Rule appeared in the Federal Register on June 6. USPS will accept public comments until July 6, 2022.


Source: USPS


SUSTAINABILITY, ESG, AND CLIMATE ACTION


Real Zero or Net Zero

June 14, 2022


NextEra Energy announced Real Zero, the most ambitious carbon emissions-reduction goal ever set by an energy producer, committing to eliminating carbon emissions from its operations by no later than 2045, while leveraging low-cost renewables to drive energy affordability for customers. Reaching the goal would require significant investment by the company and transforming its generation fleet by eliminating all scope 1 and scope 2 carbon emissions across NextEra Energy's operations while enhancing reliability, resiliency, affordability, and cost certainty for the many customer groups it serves.


Source: NextEra


In The Race Against Time to Cut Emissions, Companies’ Supply Chains Are Key

June 8, 2022


With some 80-90% of emissions in corporate supply chains and in consumer use of their products, what is known as Scope 3 emissions, supply chains are where the greatest potential impact lies.


Source: Reuters


Regulators Ramp Up Scrutiny of ESG Funds

June 2, 2022


The environmental, social, and governance (ESG) oversight train continues to gain momentum with recent efforts aimed at “greenwashing” investment funds. Several actions reflect a confluence of global efforts to ensure that ESG-related actions, regardless of sector, are consistent, comparable, and transparent. Entities participating in the ESG investment sector should remain attuned to these emerging regulatory and enforcement trends, both in the United States and elsewhere.


Source: BDLaw


The Impact of Policy Changes on United States’ Energy Transition

June 1, 2022


Addressing climate-related concerns head-on includes improvements to roads

and bridges, investment in public transport, the removal of all lead pipes, clean

drinking water for all, the modernization of airports, ports, and waterways—and

more jobs. However, President Biden’s proposed $1.75 trillion social spending

and climate mitigation Build Back Better (BBB) bill did not fare so well after it

stalled in the U.S Senate last November.


Source: Reuters

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