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EPA Issues San Antonio Ozone Nonattainment Designations

On July 17, 2018, U.S. EPA issued the area designations for the 2015 ozone standards for eight counties in Texas, encompassing the San Antonio metropolitan area.  The designations will take effect 60 days from the date of Federal Register publication and will address the following counties:

Atascosa, Bandera, Comal, Guadalupe, Kendall, Medina, and Wilson – Attainment

Bexar – Marginal Nonattainment

Bexar County will be required to meet the new standards as quickly as possible but no later than 3 years from the effective date of designation.   For marginal nonattainment, the state agency is not required to develop an attainment plan to demonstrate how the area will meet the standard or adopt additional controls.  However, photochemical modeling projects that Bexar County will meet the 2015 NAAQS standards by 2020.

For areas designated as marginal nonattainment, additional permitting and emissions reporting requirements will apply.  Bexar County will be subject to Nonattainment New Source Review requirements, including emissions offsets, and major source emissions statements which include annual reporting of emissions for sources with emissions greater than 100 tons per year for NOx or VOC.

For more information on EPA’s designation process for the 2015 ozone standards go to: https://www.epa.gov/ozone-designations.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) had previously recommended that Bexar County be designated as in attainment of the ozone standards and disagrees with EPA’s nonattainment designation.

TCEQ’s statement on the designation is available here:  https://www.tceq.texas.gov/news/releases/epa-designates-ozone-areas-1

EPS will continue to monitor these developments for impacted facilities in the area.  For more information, please contact Sandra Alvarado of our San Antonio office.

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