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Technology Transfer Network - OAR Policy and Guidance







  • On August 4th, 2005, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed to retain without modification its Clean Air Act rule that limits emissions of toxic air pollutants from gasoline distribution terminals and pipeline breakout stations.

  • At gasoline distribution terminals, trucks are loaded with gasoline for delivery to gasoline stations. Pipeline breakout stations are located along a gasoline pipeline and temporarily store and distribute gasoline.

  • EPA issued national rule to limit emissions of toxic air pollutants from these facilities in 1994. This rule is one of 96 rules called maximum achievable control technology (MACT) standards that require 174 industry sectors to eliminate 1.7 million tons of 188 toxic air pollutants. Congress listed these toxic air pollutants in the Clean Air Act.

  • The 1994 MACT standards for gasoline distribution terminals and pipeline breakout stations reduce emissions of toxic air pollutants by 2,300 tons each year.

  • The Clean Air Act now requires EPA to assess the risk remaining after the application of the 1994 MACT standards. These are often called residual risk assessments.

  • Also at this time, EPA must review and revise the 1994 standards, as necessary, by taking into account developments in practices, processes and control technologies.

  • We are proposing no further action at this time to revise the standards.

    • The risk assessment found that after application of the MACT standards, the chronic cancer, non-cancer, and acute risks to humans, as well as ecological effects from these facilities are low enough that further controls are not warranted.

    • The technology assessment did not identify any significant advancements in practices, processes, and control technology. Also, additional controls would achieve minimal air toxics reductions at a very high cost.

  • The proposal announces EPA’s decision to retain the existing standards and requests public comments on the residual risk assessment and technology review. A 60-day comment period will begin at the date of publication of this proposal in the Federal Register.




  • The Clean Air Act requires EPA to regulate air toxics from large industrial facilities in two-phases.

  • The first phase is “technology-based," where EPA develops standards for controlling the emissions of air toxics from sources in an industry group (or "source category"). These Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) standards are based on emissions levels that are already being achieved by the better-controlled and lower-emitting sources in an industry. EPA finalized the Gas Distribution and Pipeline Breakout Station MACT standards in December 1994.

  • Within 8 years of setting the MACT standards, EPA is required to assess the remaining health risks from each source category to determine whether the MACT standards appropriately protect public health. In applying this “risk-based” approach - called residual risk - EPA must determine whether more health-protective standards are necessary.

  • To decide whether additional regulation under residual risk was necessary, EPA applied the two-step decision process described in the 1989 Benzene National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants. With this process EPA first determines if the risk to the individual most exposed is acceptable and then if the exposed population is protected with an ample margin of safety. This decision framework is further described in both the EPA’s Residual Risk Report to Congress at https://www3.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg/t3/reports/risk_rep.pdf), and in the Air Toxics Risk Assessment Reference Library (https://www.epa.gov/ttn/fera/risk_atoxic.html.)

  • Also, every 8 years after setting the MACT standards, the Clean Air Act requires that EPA review and revise them, if necessary, to account for improvements in air pollution controls and or prevention.




  • Interested parties can download the notice from EPA's web site on the Internet under recently signed rules at the following address: https://www3.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg/ramain.html.

  • Today's proposed action and other background information are also available either electronically in EDOCKET, EPA=s electronic public docket and comment system, or in hard copy at EPA=s Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Room B102, 1301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC (Docket ID No. OAR-2004-0019). The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center is (202) 566-1742.

  • HOW TO COMMENT: Comments will be accepted for 60 days beginning when this proposal is published in the Federal Register. All comments should be identified by Docket ID No. OAR-2003-0161 and submitted by one of the following methods:

    • Federal e-rulemaking portal;

    • EDOCKET;

    • E-mail (a-and-r-docket@epa.gov);

    • Facsimile (202) 566-1741;

    • Mail (Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mailcode: 6102T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20460); or

    • Hand delivery (Air and Radiation Docket and Information Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Room B102, 1301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC).

  • For additional information, visit the EPA's website at: https://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/gasdist/gasdispg.html, or contact Stephen A. Shedd of the EPA's Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards at (919) 541-5397 or by e-mail at shedd.steve@epa.gov.

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