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PA EPA ISSUES FINAL REVISIONS TO ACID RAIN PERMIT RULES

Release Date: 11/18/94
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PA EPA ISSUES FINAL REVISIONS TO ACID RAIN PERMIT RULES

FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 1994

EPA ISSUES FINAL REVISIONS TO ACID RAIN PERMIT RULES

EPA today announced two separate actions that constitute final revisions to acid rain program permit rules originally issued Jan. 11, 1993. These actions are part of settlement agreements arising out of petitions to review the original rules filed by environmental groups, New York state and electric utilities. The original regulations, mandated by the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments, establish an annual ten million ton reduction in sulfur dioxide (SO2) from 1980 levels using a market-based system of trading allowances allocated to affected utilities. An allowance is the right to emit one ton of SO2. The first action announced today concerns changes in SO2 allowance allocations for "substitution" power plant units. Substitution units are those not required to begin SO2 emission compliance obligations until Phase II of the program (beginning in the year 2000), but which utility officials have voluntarily chosen to begin compliance in Phase I of the program (starting Jan. 1995). The action also involves changes in the eligibility requirements of utility units that wish to become "compensating" units. Compensating units are Phase II units that provide electrical generation to compensate for a reduction in electrical generation from Phase I facilities. This first action limits allowance allocations so that substitution plans will not create excess allowances. The action also limits compensating units to those that would not create excess new allowances. The second action announced today deals with the eligibility requirements to become a substitution unit. The action elaborates on the statutory requirement that Phase I unit owners and operators control the substitution unit. Two fact sheets on the revisions are available from the Acid Rain Hotline at 202-233-9620. For further information, contact Dwight Alpern of EPA's Acid Rain Division at 202-233-9151.

R-286