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New Mexico
Main Heading:
New Mexico SIP Plan Summaries
Subheading:
New Mexico, Grant County Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) Attainment Plan and Redesignation to Attainment Summary
Item Subpart:
New Mexico, Grant County Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) Attainment Plan and Redesignation to Attainment Summary


Regulatory Text:
New Mexico, Grant County Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) Attainment Plan and Redesignation to Attainment Summary

Federal Register Dates:
     Proposed Rule:       September 18, 2003 (68 FR 54705).
     Direct Final Rule:   September 18, 2003 (68 FR 54672-54677).
     Effective Date:      November 17, 2003.


Area Covered: Portion of Grant County in New Mexico.  See amendatory language at end of this summary


Type of Pollutant: Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)


Below is relevant information copied from the direct final approval Federal Register action.
See 68 FR 54672 (September 18, 2003) for the complete Federal Register.


TITLE:  Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; New Mexico;
Redesignation of Grant County to Attainment for Sulfur Dioxide  

ACTION: Direct final rule.

SUMMARY: The EPA is taking direct final action on a request to
redesignate Grant County, New Mexico from nonattainment area to
attainment for the sulfur dioxide (SO2) National Ambient Air
Quality Standards (NAAQS). In conjunction with this action, EPA is also
approving the maintenance plan, and its associated contingency measures
plan for the Grant County nonattainment area, which were submitted to
ensure that the attainment of SO2 NAAQS will continue to be
maintained. The redesignation request and maintenance and contingency
measures plans were submitted as a revision to the New Mexico State
Implementation Plan (SIP) by the New Mexico Environment Department
(NMED) on February 21, 2003. We are approving these revisions in
accordance with the requirements of the Federal Clean Air Act (Act).


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents

A. What Action is EPA Taking?
B. Why was this SIP Revision Submitted?
C. What is the NAAQS for SO2?
D. What is a SIP?
E. What is the Federal approval process for a SIP?
F. What does Federal approval of a SIP mean to me?
G. What Requirements Must the State Meet for Approval of a
Redesignation and How Did the State Meet Them?
Final Action


    Throughout this document ``we,'' ``us,'' and ``our'' means EPA.

A. What Action Is EPA Taking?

    The EPA designated Grant County, New Mexico as nonattainment for
violating the secondary SO2 NAAQS on March 3, 1978, at 43 FR
9016. On September 11, 1978, at 43 FR 40428, EPA designated Grant
County, New Mexico as nonattainment for violating
the primary SO2 NAAQS. Any area designated as not attaining
the primary or secondary SO2 NAAQS as of the date of
enactment of the 1990 Amendments was designated nonattainment for
SO2 by operation of law upon enactment, pursuant to section
107(d)(1)(C)(i) of the Act (April 22, 1991, at 56 FR 16274).
    On February 21, 2003, the Governor of New Mexico submitted to us a
revision to the New Mexico SO2 SIP (February 21, 2003
submittal). The February 21, 2003 submittal specifically requested EPA
to redesignate the portion of Grant County, New Mexico, located in the
Air Quality Control Region (AQCR) No. 021, from nonattainment to
attainment for the SO2 NAAQS. This particular portion of
Grant County is restricted to a 3.5 mile radius around the Kennecott
Copper Corporation (now owned by the Phelps Dodge Corporation and
called the Hurley smelter) and land above 6470 feet Mean Sea Level
within an 8 mile radius of the Hurley Smelter in Hurley, New Mexico.
The air monitoring data for this area reveals values better than
national standards for SO2. The February 21, 2003, submittal
also included a maintenance plan for this area to ensure that
attainment of the SO2 NAAQS will be maintained through
permitting and the applicable SIP rules. The State also submitted a
contingency measures plan that consists of monitoring measures.
    In this document we are approving NMED's request to redesignate the
Grant County primary and secondary SO2 nonattainment areas
to attainment of the SO2 NAAQS. We are also approving the
maintenance plan and the contingency measures plan for this area into
the New Mexico SO2 SIP. See our Technical Support Document
(TSD) for additional information and our evaluation of this submittal.

B. Why Was This SIP Revision Submitted?

    The NMED believes that the Grant County area is now eligible for
redesignation because EPA approved New Mexico's SIP in 1982, and the
SO2 monitors in the nonattainment area of Grant County have
not recorded exceedances of either the primary or secondary
SO2 NAAQS since 1979.

C. What Is the NAAQS for SO2?

    Under section 109 of the Act, EPA established the NAAQS to protect
public health and welfare. The NAAQS address 6 criteria pollutants,
which are carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, lead, particulate
matter, and sulfur dioxide (SO2).
    High concentrations of SO2 affect breathing and may
aggravate existing respiratory and cardiovascular disease. Sensitive
populations include asthmatics, individuals with bronchitis or
emphysema, children and the elderly. SO2 is also a primary
contributor to acid deposition or acid rain, which causes acidification
of lakes and streams and can damage trees, crops, historic buildings
and statues. In addition, sulfur compounds in the air contribute to
visibility impairment in large parts of the country. This is especially
noticeable in national parks.
    Ambient SO2 results largely from stationary sources such
as coal and oil combustion, steel mills, refineries, pulp and paper
mills and from nonferrous smelters. There are 3 NAAQS for
SO2:

--An annual arithmetic mean of 0.03 ppm (80 ug/m\3\);
--A 24-hour level of 0.14 ppm (365 ug/m\3\); and
--A 3-hour level of 0.50 ppm (1300 ug/m\3\).

The first two standards are primary (health-related) standards, while
the 3-hour NAAQS is a secondary (welfare-related) standard. The annual
mean standard is not to be exceeded, while the short-term standards are
not to be exceeded more than once per year. Our TSD contains the
ambient SO2 monitored values for the Grant County, New
Mexico nonattainment area.

D. What Is a SIP?

    Section 110 of the Act requires states to develop air pollution
regulations and control strategies to ensure that state air quality
meets the NAAQS that EPA has established.
    Each state must submit these regulations and control strategies to
us for approval and incorporation into the federally enforceable SIP.
Each federally approved SIP is designed to protect air quality. These
SIPs can be extensive, containing state regulations or other
enforceable documents and supporting information such as emission
inventories, monitoring networks, and modeling demonstrations.

E. What Is the Federal Approval Process for a SIP?

    When a state wants to incorporate its regulations into the
federally enforceable SIP, the state must formally adopt the
regulations and control strategies consistent with state and Federal
requirements. This process includes a public notice, a public hearing,
a public comment period, and a formal adoption by a state-authorized
rulemaking body.
    Once a state adopts a rule, regulation, or control strategy, the
state may submit the adopted provisions to us and request that we
include these provisions in the federally enforceable SIP. We must then
decide on an appropriate Federal action, provide public notice on this
action, and seek additional public comment regarding this action. If we
receive relevant adverse comments, we must address them prior to taking
a final action.
    Under section 110 of the Act, when we approve all state regulations
and supporting information, those state regulations and supporting
information become a part of the federally approved SIP. You can find
records of these SIP actions in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)
at Title 40, part 52, entitled ``Approval and Promulgation of
Implementation Plans.'' The actual state regulations that we approved
are not reproduced in their entirety in the CFR but are ``incorporated
by reference,'' which means that we have approved a given state
regulation with a specific effective date.

F. What Does Federal Approval of a SIP Mean to Me?

    A state may enforce state regulations before and after we
incorporate those regulations into a federally approved SIP. After we
incorporate those regulations into a federally approved SIP, both EPA
and the public may also take enforcement action against violators of
these regulations.

G. What Requirements Must the State Meet for Approval of a
Redesignation and How Did the State Meet Them?

1. The State Must Show That the Area Is Attaining the Applicable NAAQS

    An area is considered to be in attainment of the SO2
NAAQS provided that the primary and secondary standards have not been
violated within the last three years. Grant County has had two monitors
in place that have shown no violations since 1997; these monitors are
in Bayard, NM and Hurley, NM. The monitor in Bayard has been in place
since 1974 (and has shown no violations since 1979) and the monitor in
Hurley has been in place since 1997. These monitors meet the
requirements of 40 CFR Parts 53 and 58.
    The monitor in Hurley is located in the area of highest
concentration for SO2 within the nonattainment area, as
studied by the EPA Regional Office and NMED before deployment of the
monitor in 1997. The monitor was placed where modeling indicated the
highest concentration was likely to occur. As a result of this
modeling, NMED does not have to submit additional material reproving
that the data is representative of the point of
highest concentration in the nonattainment area.

2. The SIP for the Area Must Be Fully Approved Under Section 110(k) of
the Act and Must Satisfy All Requirements That Apply to the Area

    The Grant County SO2 SIP revision was approved by EPA on
May 5, 1982 (47 FR 19332) and contained limits pertaining to the sole
source of SO2, the Hurley Smelter. The EPA approved changes
to New Mexico's SO2 plan for Grant County on September 26,
1997 (62 FR 50514).

3. The EPA Has Determined That the Improvement in Air Quality Is Due to
Permanent and Enforceable Reductions in Emissions

    Air quality improvement in the Grant County SO2
nonattainment area is attributed to the SO2 emission limits
in the SIP and to the operating restrictions within the Title V permit
imposed on the facility that contributed to the nonattainment status.
Reductions in emissions are therefore permanent and enforceable.

4. The State Has Met All Applicable Requirements Under Section 110 and
Part D of the Act That Were Applicable Prior to Submittal of the
Complete Redesignation Request

    The requirements under Section 110 and Part D are met with the
prior approval of the SIP revisions for the source in the area in 1982,
the approval of revisions in 1997 (62 FR 50514), and with the detailed
study of the modeling generated by the NMED in 1997.

5. EPA Is Fully Approving a Maintenance Plan, Including a Contingency
Plan, for the Area Under Section 175A of the Act

Maintenance Plan

    Section 175A of the Act requires states to submit a SIP revision
which provides for the maintenance of the NAAQS in the area for at
least 10 years after approval of the redesignation. The basic
components needed to ensure proper maintenance of the NAAQS are:
attainment inventory, maintenance demonstration, verification of
continued attainment, ambient air monitoring network, and a contingency
plan.

 a. Attainment Inventory
    The state's submittal contains the emission inventory of
SO2 sources in the Grant County nonattainment area, dating
back to 1997. It clearly shows that Grant County has not exceeded the
SO2 NAAQS since 1997.

 b. Maintenance Demonstration and Verification of Continued Attainment
    Maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS in the Grant County
nonattainment area has been achieved through the SIP and Title V permit
requirements. The SO2 emitting source involved in the Grant
County SO2 redesignation (the Hurley Smelter) is meeting the
SO2 emission limits identified in the SIP rules and permit.
NMED will track the maintenance plan through the semi-annual review of
permit conditions, air emission inventory and state regulations 20.2.41
NMAC and 20.2.3 NMAC which verify that the State of New Mexico has the
continued legal authority needed to implement and enforce air quality
controls to maintain the SO2 NAAQS in Grant County.

 c. Monitoring Network
    After a detailed study of the modeling generated by the NMED in
1997 for placement of a new monitor in the Grant County nonattainment
area, the Regional Office determined (in a letter to NMED dated August
26, 2002) that ``the monitor was placed where modeling indicated the
highest concentration was likely to occur.'' A copy of this letter is
being attached to our TSD for reference purposes. Therefore, the NMED
will use the current SO2 air monitoring station located in
Hurley, New Mexico to verify continuing attainment of the NAAQS in the
area. The Hurley monitoring station meets 40 CFR Part 58. The
SO2 monitoring station located in Bayard, New Mexico will be
discontinued.

 d. Contingency Plan
    Section 175A of the Act requires that the maintenance plan include
contingency provisions to correct any violation of the NAAQS after
redesignation of the area. However, the General Preamble for the
Implementation of Title I of the Act Amendments of 1990 (57 FR 13498)
states that SO2 provisions require special considerations. A
primary reason is that SO2 control methods are well
established and understood. Therefore, contingency measures for
SO2 need only consist of a comprehensive program to identify
sources of violations of the SO2 NAAQS and to undertake an
aggressive follow-up for compliance and enforcement.
    Upon verification of a violation of either the 24-hour or 3-hour
SO2 NAAQS, if the Hurley Smelter is responsible for the
violation, NMED will work with this source to ensure that the violation
will not occur again. If necessary, NMED will write and adopt rules or
amend the company's Title V permit to control SO2 emissions
at the company.
    The State will be utilizing both the currently approved SIP
requirements and Title V permit as tools for implementation of
SO2 Maintenance Plan. The State will be utilizing both Title
V reporting, testing, compliance certification, and recordkeeping
controls combined with the Continuous Emission Monitoring System (CEMS)
data for SO2 emissions as its Contingency Plan. It is EPA's
finding that these reporting, testing, compliance certification,
recordkeeping controls and the CEMS data requirements are a
comprehensive program for identifying violations caused by the smelter.
The February 21, 2003 submittal does not propose to remove or relax any
of the existing SIP approved measures for controlling SO2
emissions. A new major source of SO2 or an existing source
with major modification, including a process that may have been shut
down or ceased operation, will not only have to comply with the
existing federally approved SO2 SIP provisions, it will also
need to comply with terms and conditions that may be more stringent
than existing SIP requirements imposed on the source in its air permit
to ensure the area will continue maintaining the attainment status.
    As detailed above, the State has met the maintenance plan
requirements of Section 175A of the Act and the maintenance plan is
fully approvable. The contingency measures plan is also fully
approvable.


EPA Final Action

    We have evaluated the State's submittal and have determined that it
meets the applicable requirements of the Act, and EPA regulations, and
conforms to EPA policy. Therefore, we are approving the State of New
Mexico's request to redesignate Grant County from a primary and
secondary SO2 nonattainment area to an SO2 NAAQS
attainment area. We are also approving the maintenance and contingency
measures plans for Grant County into the New Mexico SIP. Furthermore,
we are approving the NMED's request to discontinue the current
SO2 monitoring in Bayard, NM.

*    *    *    *    *

AMENDATORY LANGUAGE:

 40 CFR Parts 52 and 81 are amended as follows:

PART 52--[AMENDED]

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

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart GG--New Mexico

 2. In Sec.  52.1620 paragraph (e) is amended by adding two new entries
to the end of the table entitled ``EPA Approved Nonregulatory
Provisions and Quasi-Regulatory Measures in the New Mexico SIP,'' to
read as follows:

Sec.  52.1620  Identification of plan.

* * * * *
    (e) * * *

[[Page 54677]]

            EPA Approved Nonregulatory Provisions and Quasi-Regulatory Measures in the New Mexico SIP
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        Applicable geo-          State
       Name of SIP provision            graphic or non-       submittal/    EPA approval date     Explanation
                                        attainment area     effective date
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                  * * * * * * *

Revision for Attainment, and         Portion of Grant          02/21/03       9/18/03        
 Maintenance Plan of SO2 Standards.   County, this portion                  
                                      is restricted to a                    
                                      3.5 mile radius
                                      around the Kennecott
                                      Copper Corporation
                                      (now owned by the
                                      Phelps Dodge
                                      Corporation and
                                      called the Hurley
                                      smelter) and land
                                      above 6470 feet Mean
                                      Sea Level within an
                                      8 mile radius of the
                                      Hurley Smelter/
                                      Concentrator in
                                      Hurley.

Contingency Measures Plan..........  Portion of Grant          02/21/03        9/18/03    
                                      County, this portion                  
                                      is restricted to a                    
                                      3.5 mile radius
                                      around the Kennecott
                                      Copper Corporation
                                      (now owned by the
                                      Phelps Dodge
                                      Corporation and
                                      called the Hurley
                                      smelter) and land
                                      above 6470 feet Mean
                                      Sea Level within an
                                      8 mile radius of the
                                      Hurley Smelter/
                                      Concentrator in
                                      Hurley.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

PART 81--[AMENDED]

 1. The authority citation for part 81 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

 2. In Sec.  81.332 the SO2 table is amended by revising the
entry for the AQCR 012 to read as follows:

Sec.  81.332  New Mexico.

* * * * *

                                                 New Mexico--SO2
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Does not meet   Does not meet                    Better than
                Designated area                      primary        secondary       Cannot be        national
                                                    standards       standards      classified       standards
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AQCR 012:
Grant County...................................  ..............  ..............  ..............        X
Remainder of AQCR..............................  ..............  ..............  ..............        X

                                                  * * * * * * *
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

* * * * *


EPA Region 6 Contacts:
     Alan Shar (214-665-6691), shar.allen@epa.gov
     Bill Deese (214-665-7253), deese.william@epa.gov

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This SIP Citation Was Last Modified on: 07/16/2004