USEPA published its proposed revisions to Air Emissions Reporting Requirements (AERR) in August. AERR is a regulation that requires states, local agencies, and some tribes (SLTs) to report annual air emissions to EPA. The comment period has been extended until November, 17, 2023.
The current regulation allows voluntary reporting of air toxics emissions. EPA uses the data collected and other resources to create the National Emissions Inventory (NEI). NEI supports programs and activities such as Modeling (Air Quality Standards, Risk Analysis, etc.), Trends (Air Quality Trends Report), and Public Information.
AERR currently requires reporting of:
Proposed AERR revisions:
Proposed Phase-in of Stationary Point Source Reporting for owners and operators:
The proposed AERR rule would require nearly 130,000 facilities to report air toxics emissions directly to EPA. It would also give states the option to collect the air toxics data from industry (rather than states) and report it to EPA, provided the Agency approves their program. This proposed action would allow for EPA to annually collect (starting in 2027) hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions data for point sources in addition to continuing the criteria air pollutant and precursor (CAP) collection in place under the existing AERR.
Here are some key things to know about the proposed rule from the EPA website:
1. It would require air toxics (hazardous air pollutant) emissions reporting. While most states voluntarily report air toxics emissions data to EPA now, reporting is not consistent nationwide. The proposal would require many industrial facilities to report air toxics emissions data and offers states the option to report emissions on behalf of the industry sources in their states.
2. It would mean that more facilities must report emissions every year by using the same emissions thresholds every year to determine whether a facility’s detailed emissions information must be reported.
3. It would fill reporting gaps for some portions of Indian country and federal waters. The AERR proposal would require industry to report emissions for certain facilities that operate in those areas and that currently are not reported.
4. It includes provisions to limit the burden on small businesses. The proposal includes flexibilities such as allowing certain small businesses to report a facility’s total air toxics emissions instead of detailed data and exempting many collision repair shops from air toxics reporting requirements.
5. It would provide EPA information that would help the Agency improve its estimates of emissions from prescribed fires. EPA is committed to helping communities and our federal, state, local, and tribal partners manage the health impacts of smoke from wildland fires, including prescribed fires. Prescribed fire is a land management tool that can reduce the likelihood of catastrophic wildfires by reducing the buildup of unwanted fuels.