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EPA Continues Efforts to Reduce Hazardous Air Emissions

Release Date: 08/26/2003
Contact Information:


Contact: Lisa Harrison at 202 564-9828

(08/26/03) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will approve this week thirteen rules requiring industrial facilities to install the Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT). The new MACT standards or rules will protect Americans from eye, lung, and skin irritation, liver and kidney damage, cancer and other health problems by reducing national emissions of toxic air pollutants by more than 68,000 tons per year.

EPA is required by the Clean Air Act (CAA) to regulate the emissions of 188 listed toxic air pollutants. The 1990 CAA Amendments charged EPA to identify industrial or source categories that emit one or more of the toxic air pollutants. Once identified, EPA must develop regulations that require stringent air pollution reduction measures for each source category. The 1990 Amendments required an aggressive schedule for EPA to control emissions of the listed pollutants from over 170 source categories.

“By the end of August, EPA will have issued 92 MACT standards. When fully implemented, these rules will keep nearly two million tons of toxic compounds out of our nation’s air each year,” said Acting Administrator Marianne Lamont Horinko. “These actions will make significant gains in protecting public health.”

The August final rules apply to the following industries: Organic Liquids Distribution; miscellaneous Organic Chemical Production; miscellaneous Coating Manufacturing; Site Remediation; miscellaneous Metal Parts & Products (Surface Coating) & Asphalt/Coal Tar Application on Metal Pipes; Iron and Steel Foundries; Primary Magnesium; Metal Can (Surface Coating); Taconite Iron Ore processing; Plastic Parts (Surface Coating); Combustion Turbines; Lime Manufacturing; Mercury Cell Chlor-Alkali Production; and Chlorine Production (delisting).

EPA will propose an air toxic standard for utilities by December 15. This rule will be finalized in 2004. The remaining MACT rules will be completed by February, 2004 and they cover: Industrial, Commercial and Institutional Boilers and Process Heaters; Reciprocating Internal Combustion Engines (RICE); Plywood and Composite Wood Products; Automobile and Light Duty Trucks Manufacturing (Surface Coating).

Copies of the recently signed standards and fact sheets are available at: http://www.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg
under ‘Recent Actions’.