Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990

In June 1989, President Bush proposed major revisions to the Clean Air Act. Both the House of Representatives and the Senate passed Clean Air bills by large votes that contained the major components of the president's proposals. After a joint conference committee met to work out the differences in the bills, Congress voted for the package recommended by the conferees, and President Bush signed the bill, the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (1990 CAAAs), on November 15, 1990. The 1990 CAAAs are the most substantive regulations adopted since passage of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1970. Specifically, the new law:

• Encourages the use of market-based principles and other innovative approaches, such as performance-based standards and emission banking and trading;

• Provides a framework from which alternative clean fuels will be used by setting standards in the fleet and a California pilot program that can be met by the most cost-effective combination of fuels and technology;

• Promotes the use of clean low-sulfur coal and natural gas, as well as innovative technologies to clean high-sulfur coal through the Acid Rain Program;

• Reduces enough energy waste and creates enough of a market for clean fuels derived from grain and natural gas to cut dependency on oil imports by 1 million barrels per day;

• Promotes energy conservation through an Acid Rain Program that gives utilities flexibility to obtain needed emission reductions through programs that encourage customers to conserve energy.

The 1990 CAAAs contains eleven major divisions, referred to as Titles I through XI, which either provided amendments to existing titles and sections of the Clean Air Act or provided new titles and sections. The titles for the 1990 CAAAs are:

• Title I—Provisions for Attainment and Maintenance of National Ambient Air Quality Standards;

• Title II—Provisions Relating to Mobile Sources;

• Title IV—Acid Deposition Control;

• Title VI—Stratospheric Ozone and Global Climate Protection;

• Title VII—Provisions Relating to Enforcement;

• Title VIII—Miscellaneous Provisions;

• Title X—Disadvantaged Business Concerns;

• Title XI—Clean Air Deployment Transition Assistance.

The titles that directly impact the use of coal, Titles I, III, IV, and V, are discussed in the following sections. The concepts of NAAQSs, NSPSs, and

PSD, as defined in Title I, remained virtually unchanged; however, major changes have occurred in regulations and approaches used to address nonat-tainment areas in Title I, hazardous air pollutants in Title III, acid rain in Title IV, and permitting in Title V.

Title I: Provisions for Attainment and Maintenance of National Ambient Air Quality Standards

Although the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1970 and 1977 brought about significant improvements in air quality, urban air pollution persisted, and many cities failed attainment for ozone, carbon monoxide, and PM10. Of these, the most widespread pollution problem is ozone (i.e., smog). One component of smog, hydrocarbons, comes from automobile emissions, petroleum refineries, chemical plants, dry cleaners, gasoline stations, house painting, and printing shops while another key component, nitrogen oxides, comes from the combustion of fossil fuels for transportation, utilities, and industries [16].

The 1990 CAAAs created a new, balanced strategy for the nation to address urban smog. The new law gave states more time to meet the air quality standard but it also required states to make constant progress in reducing emissions. It required the federal government to reduce emissions from cars, trucks, and buses; from consumer products such as hair spray and window-washing compounds; and from ships and barges during loading and unloading of petroleum products. The federal government must also develop guidance that states the need to control stationary sources.

The 1990 CAAAs address the urban air pollution problems of ozone, carbon monoxide, and PM10. Specifically, they clarify how areas are designated and redefine the terms of attainment. The 1990 CAAAs also allow the EPA to define the boundaries of nonattainment areas and establish provisions defining when and how the federal government can impose sanctions on areas of the country that have not met certain conditions.

For the pollutant ozone, the 1990 CAAAs establish nonattainment area classifications ranked according to the severity of the area's air pollution problem. These classifications are marginal, moderate, serious, severe, and extreme and were designated based on the air quality of the nonattainment area during the period of 1987 to 1989. The EPA assigns each nonattainment area one of these categories, thus triggering varying requirements with which the area must comply in order to meet the ozone standard. Table 4-3 lists the ozone design value, which determines the classification, attainment deadlines, minimum size of a new or modified source that would be affected, and offset requirements [4].

Nonattainment areas have to implement different control measures depending upon their classification. Nonattainment areas with worse air quality problems must implement greater control measures. For example, in areas classified as extreme, boilers with emission rates greater than

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