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Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; North Carolina: Approval of Rocky Mount Motor Vehicle Emissions Budget Update

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government

Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; North Carolina: Approval of Rocky Mount Motor Vehicle Emissions Budget Update

A. Stanley Meiburg
September 27, 2012


[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 188 (Thursday, September 27, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 59335-59338]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-23716]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 52

[EPA-R04-OAR-2012-0013(a); FRL-9732-7]


Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; North 
Carolina: Approval of Rocky Mount Motor Vehicle Emissions Budget Update

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Direct final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: EPA is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the 
North Carolina State Implementation Plan (SIP), submitted to EPA on 
February 7, 2011, by the State of North Carolina, through the North 
Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR), 
Division of Air Quality (DAQ). North Carolina's February 7, 2011, 
submission supplements the original redesignation request and 
maintenance plan for the Rocky Mount, North Carolina 1997 8-hour ozone 
area submitted on June 19, 2006, and approved by EPA on November 6, 
2006. The Rocky Mount, North Carolina 1997 8-hour ozone area is 
comprised of Edgecombe and Nash Counties in North Carolina. North 
Carolina's February 7, 2011, SIP revision increases the safety margin 
allocated to motor vehicle emissions budgets (MVEBs) for both Edgecombe 
and Nash Counties to account for changes in the emissions model and 
vehicle miles traveled (VMT) projection model. EPA is approving this 
SIP revision pursuant to section 110 of the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act). 
North Carolina's February 7, 2011, SIP revision meets all of the 
statutory and regulatory requirements, and is consistent with EPA's 
guidance.

DATES: This rule is effective on November 26, 2012 without further 
notice, unless EPA receives relevant adverse comment by October 29, 
2012. If EPA receives such comment, EPA will publish a timely 
withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that this rule 
will not take effect.

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R04-
OAR-2012-0013 by one of the following methods:
    1. www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line instructions for 
submitting comments.
    2. Email: R4-RDS@epa.gov.
    3. Fax: (404) 562-9019.
    4. Mail: EPA-R04-OAR-2012-0013, Regulatory Development Section, Air 
Planning Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., 
Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960.
    5. Hand Delivery or Courier: Lynorae Benjamin, Chief, Regulatory 
Development Section, Air Planning Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics 
Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 
Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Such deliveries are 
only accepted during the Regional Office's normal hours of operation. 
The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through 
Friday, 8:30 to 4:30, excluding federal holidays.
    Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-R04-OAR-
2012-0013. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included 
in the public docket without change and may be made available online at 
www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, 
unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential 
Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is 
restricted by statute. Do not submit through www.regulations.gov or 
email, information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected. 
The www.regulations.gov Web site is an ``anonymous access'' system, 
which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information 
unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email 
comment directly to EPA without going through www.regulations.gov, your 
email address will be automatically captured and included as part of 
the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on 
the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that 
you include your name and other contact information in the body of your 
comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your 
comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for 
clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic 
files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of 
encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses. For additional 
information about EPA's public docket visit the EPA Docket Center 
homepage at http://www.epa.gov/epahome/dockets.htm.
    Docket: All documents in the electronic docket are listed in the 
www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some 
information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI or other information 
whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such 
as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be 
publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket 
materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or 
in hard copy at the Regulatory Development Section, Air Planning 
Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street, SW., 
Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you 
contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official 
hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8:30 to 4:30, excluding 
federal holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Zuri Farngalo, Regulatory Development 
Section, Air Planning Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management 
Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth 
Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Zuri Farngalo may be reached 
by phone at (404) 562-9152 or by electronic mail address 
farngalo.zuri@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Table of Contents

I. Background
II. EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's SIP Revision
III. Final Action
IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

I. Background

    The Rocky Mount, North Carolina 1997 8-hour ozone attainment and 
maintenance area is comprised of two counties--Edgecombe and Nash 
(hereafter referred to as the ``Rocky Mount Area'' or ``Area''). In 
accordance with the CAA, the Rocky Mount Area was designated 
nonattainment for the 1997 8-hour ozone national ambient air quality 
standards (NAAQS) on April 30, 2004, with an effective date of June 15, 
2004. See 69 FR 23858.
    On June 19, 2006, the State of North Carolina, through NCDENR, 
submitted a final request for EPA to: (1) Redesignate the Rocky Mount 
Area to attainment; and (2) approve a North Carolina SIP revision 
containing a maintenance plan for Rocky Mount, North Carolina. On 
November 6, 2006, EPA approved the redesignation request for the Rocky 
Mount Area. Additionally, EPA approved the 1997 8-hour ozone 
maintenance plan (including MVEBs for Edgecombe and Nash Counties) for 
the

[[Page 59336]]

Rocky Mount Area. 71 FR 64891. These approvals were based on EPA's 
determination that the State of North Carolina had demonstrated that 
the Rocky Mount Area met the criteria for redesignation to attainment 
specified in the CAA, including the determination that the entire Rocky 
Mount Area had attained the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS.
    In the November 6, 2006, final rulemaking, EPA also found adequate 
and approved MVEBs for Edgecombe and Nash Counties in the Rocky Mount 
Area. Specifically, EPA found adequate and approved the 2008 and 2017 
MVEBs for nitrogen oxides (NOX) (for both Edgecombe and Nash 
Counties) that were contained in the 1997 8-hour ozone maintenance plan 
for the Rocky Mount Area.\1\ Further, in the November 6, 2006, action, 
EPA found adequate and approved the insignificance determination for 
volatile organic compound (VOC) contribution from motor vehicle 
emissions to the 1997 8-hour ozone pollution in the Rocky Mount Area.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ North Carolina established subarea MVEBs at the county level 
so each county must consider its individual subarea MVEBs for the 
purposes of implementing transportation conformity.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    On February 7, 2011, North Carolina provided a SIP revision (the 
subject of this action) to increase the amount of safety margins 
allocated to the NOX MVEBs to account for changes in the 
projection models. Section II provides EPA's analysis of North 
Carolina's February 7, 2011, SIP revision.

II. EPA's Analysis of North Carolina's SIP Revision

    As discussed above, on February 7, 2011, the State of North 
Carolina, through NCDENR, submitted a SIP revision to revise the MVEBs 
for Edgecombe and Nash Counties in the Rocky Mount Area to account for 
the new emissions model, VMT projection models, and other emission 
model input data. The MVEBs (expressed in tons per day (tpd) and 
kilograms per day (kg/d)) that are being updated through today's action 
were originally approved by EPA on November 6, 2006, and are outlined 
in the table below.

                                                             Table 1--Original MVEBs for NOX
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                2008
                                                                2017
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Edgecombe County....................  8.05 tpd...................  7,302.8 kg/d...............  6.00 tpd...................  5,443.1 kg/d.
Nash County.........................  13.32 tpd..................  12,083.7 kg/d..............  7.41 tpd...................  6,722.2 kg/d.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    DAQ is currently allocating portions of the available safety margin 
\2\ to the MVEBs to account for new emissions models, VMT projections 
models, as well as changes to future vehicle mix assumptions, that 
influence the emission estimations. DAQ decided to allocate a majority 
of the safety margin available to the MVEBs. For 2017, DAQ estimated 
the amount needed to account for the current emission model and VMT 
projections model, and then added an additional 21 percent to account 
for any future changes to the emission model, projection model and 
other input data.
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    \2\ A safety margin is the difference between the attainment 
level of emissions from all source categories (i.e., point, area, 
and mobile) and the projected level of emissions from all source 
categories. The State may choose to allocate some of the safety 
margin to the MVEB, for transportation conformity purposes, so long 
as the total level of emissions from all source categories remains 
equal to or less than the attainment level of emissions.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    At this time, North Carolina is seeking to adjust the safety 
margins. The following tables provide the adjusted NOX 
emissions data, in kg/d for the 2008 base attainment year inventories, 
as well as the projected NOX emissions inventory 2017.

                     Table 2--Edgecombe County MVEBs
                                 [kg/d]
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                NOX Emissions
                                   -------------------------------------
                                           2008               2017
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Base Emissions....................              2,483              1,143
Safety Margin Allocated to MVEB...              1,674              1,108
NOX Conformity MVEB...............              4,157              2,251
------------------------------------------------------------------------


                       Table 3--Nash County MVEBs
                                 [kg/d]
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                NOX Emissions
                                   -------------------------------------
                                           2008               2017
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Base Emissions....................              8,790              3,767
Safety Margin Allocated to MVEB...              1,655              2,374
NOX Conformity MVEB...............             10,444              6,141
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    A total of 3,329 kg (3.67 tons) and 3,482 kg (3.84 tons) of 2008 
and 2017 NOx safety margin, respectively, were added to the 
MVEBs for the Rocky Mount Area. Taking into consideration the portion 
of the safety margin applied to the MVEBs, the resulting difference 
between the attainment level of emissions from all sources and the 
projected level of emissions from all sources in the maintenance area, 
i.e., the new safety margins, for each projected year is listed.

[[Page 59337]]



          Table 4--New Safety Margins for the Rocky Mount Area
------------------------------------------------------------------------
          Year                   VOC tpd                 NOX tpd
------------------------------------------------------------------------
             2005                      N/A                   N/A
             2008                    -0.59                     0.0
             2011                    -0.51                    -6.93
             2014                    -0.07                    -9.77
             2017                    -0.07                    -7.79
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As shown in Tables 2 and 3 above, the Rocky Mount Area is projected 
to steadily decrease its total VOC and NOX emissions from 
the base year of 2008 to the maintenance year of 2017. This VOC and 
NOX emission decrease demonstrates continued attainment/
maintenance of the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for ten years from 2008 (the 
year the Area was effectively designated attainment for the 1997 8-hour 
ozone NAAQS) as required by the CAA. These projected reductions of 
ozone precursors indicates continued maintenance of the 1997 8-hour 
ozone NAAQS.
    The revised MVEBs that North Carolina submitted for the Rocky Mount 
Area were developed with projected mobile source emissions derived 
using the MOBILE6 motor vehicle emissions model. This model was the 
most current model available at the time North Carolina was performing 
its analysis. However, EPA has now issued an updated motor vehicle 
emissions model known as Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator or MOVES. In 
its announcement of this model, EPA established a two-year grace period 
for continued use of MOBILE6.2 in regional emissions analyses for 
transportation plan and transportation improvement programs (TIPs) 
conformity determinations (extending to March 2, 2012),\3\ after which 
states (other than California) must use MOVES in conformity 
determinations for TIPs. As stated above, MOBILE6.2 was the applicable 
mobile source emissions model that was available when the original SIP 
was submitted. EPA's ``Policy Guidance on the Use of MOVES2010 and 
Subsequent Minor Revisions for State Implementation Plan Development, 
Transportation Conformity, and Other Purposes'' (http://www.epa.gov/otaq/models/moves/documents/420b12010.pdf) explains that the CAA does 
not require states that have already submitted SIPs to revise these 
SIPs simply because a new motor vehicle emissions model is now 
available. The guidance further states that the use of MOBILE6.2 in an 
already submitted SIP should not be an obstacle to approval of that SIP 
assuming that it is otherwise approvable because it would be 
unreasonable to require revision to a SIP which in this case was 
submitted prior to the release of MOVES.
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    \3\ EPA recently extended the grace period to use MOVES for 
regional emissions analysis in conformity determinations to March 2, 
2013 (77FR 11394).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

III. Final Action

    EPA is taking direct final action to approve North Carolina's 
February 7, 2011, SIP revision to allocate a portion of the available 
safety margin to the MVEBs for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS for the 
Rocky Mount, North Carolina Area. The revised MVEBs, for Edgecomb and 
Nash Counties in North Carolina ensure continued attainment of the 1997 
8-hour ozone NAAQS through the maintenance year 2017. EPA has evaluated 
North Carolina's February 7, 2011, SIP revision, and has determined 
that it meets the applicable requirements of the CAA and EPA 
regulations, and is consistent with EPA policy. On March 12, 2008, EPA 
issued revised ozone NAAQS. The current action, however, is being taken 
to address requirements under the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS.
    EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because the 
Agency views this as a non-controversial amendment and anticipates no 
adverse comments. However, in the proposed rules section of this 
Federal Register publication, EPA is publishing a separate document 
that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revision should an 
adverse comment be filed. This rule will be effective on November 26, 
2012 without further notice unless the Agency receives adverse comment 
by October 29, 2012. If EPA receives such comments, then EPA will 
publish a document withdrawing the final rule and informing the public 
that the rule will not take effect. All public comments received will 
then be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed 
rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. 
Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. If no 
such comments are received, the public is advised this rule will be 
effective on November 26, 2012 and no further action will be taken on 
the proposed rule.

IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP 
submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable 
federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in 
reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, 
provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this 
action merely approves state law as meeting federal requirements and 
does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by State 
law. For that reason, this action:
     Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' subject to 
review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 
12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993);
     Does not impose an information collection burden under the 
provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);
     Is certified as not having a significant economic impact 
on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
     Does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or 
uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);
     Does not have Federalism implications as specified in 
Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
     Is not an economically significant regulatory action based 
on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 
19885, April 23, 1997);
     Is not a significant regulatory action subject to 
Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
     Is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the 
National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 
note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent 
with the CAA; and
     Does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to 
address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental 
effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under 
Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as specified 
by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because the 
SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country, and EPA notes that it 
will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or 
preempt tribal law.
    The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally 
provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating 
the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, 
to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General

[[Page 59338]]

of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action 
and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of 
Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior 
to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot 
take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal 
Register. This action is not a ``major rule'' as defined by 5 U.S.C. 
804(2).
    Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review 
of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for 
the appropriate circuit by November 26, 2012. Filing a petition for 
reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect 
the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor 
does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may 
be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or 
action. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are 
encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of 
proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules 
section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate 
petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can 
withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed 
rulemaking. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to 
enforce its requirements. See section 307(b)(2).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Ozone, 
Intergovernmental relations, Incorporation by reference, Nitrogen 
dioxides, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, and Volatile 
organic compounds.

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Dated: September 11, 2012.
A. Stanley Meiburg,
Acting Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

PART 52--[AMENDED]

0
1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart II--North Carolina

0
2. Section 52.1770(e) is amended by adding a new entry at the end of 
the table for the ``MVEB Update for the Redesignation and Maintenance 
Plan for the Rocky Mount, NC Area for the 1997 8-hour Ozone Standard'' 
to read as follows:


Sec.  52.1770  Identification of plan.

* * * * *
    (e) * * *

                                                  EPA Approved North Carolina Non-Regulatory Provisions
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              Provision                       State effective date                  EPA approval date                  Federal Register citation
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                                       * * * * * *
MVEB Update for the Redesignation and  February 7, 2011                    November 26, 2012                   [Insert citation of publication].
 Maintenance Plan for the Rocky
 Mount, NC Area for the 1997 8-hour
 Ozone Standard.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[FR Doc. 2012-23716 Filed 9-26-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-P



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