EPA Proposes Transport Rule to Replace CAIR: New Rule Governs Air Emission from Utilities Only

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In two previous Client Alerts, we have reported the vacation of the Clean Air Interstate Rule ("CAIR") by the Circuit Court for the District of Columbia in North Carolina v. EPA, 531 F.3d 896 (2008) (North Carolina I) and CAIR's subsequent, temporary resuscitation by the Circuit Court, North Carolina v. EPA, 550 F.3d 1176 (2008) (North Carolina II), pending the drafting of a replacement rule by EPA. On July 6, 2010, the EPA released its draft of the proposed replacement, the Transport Rule. This article summarizes the new rule and highlights issues for which the EPA is expressly soliciting public comments.

The Transport Rule is specifically directed at emissions from electric generating units ("EGUs") in classes 2211, 2212 and 2213 of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). Like CAIR, the Transport Rule is intended to help downwind states achieve EPA's National Ambient Air Quality Standards ("NAAQS") for fine particulate matter (pM2.5) and ozone (O3). Also like CAIR, the Transport Rule actually regulates sulfur dioxide (SO2)—a chemical precursor of pM 2.5— and nitrogen oxides (NOx)—a chemical precursor of both pM 2.5 and O3— generated by upwind states.

Please see full alert below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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