Laws & Regulations

Actions Initiated by Month

From this page, you can learn about the rules and related actions we initiate each month. For priority rulemakings, we make monthly updates on the Regulatory Development and Retrospective Review Tracker (Reg DaRRT). Links to Reg DaRRT are provided in the tables provided below, where appropriate.


February 2015 Action Initiation List

Download the February 2015 AIL (PDF).

February 2015 (as of 3/25/2015)
Title

Abstract
What's This?

Projected Publication Date
What's
This?

Cellulosic Waiver Credit Price Calculations and Minor Technical Amendments

NPRM/Direct Final Tia Sutton
202-564-8929
Sutton.Tia@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Permit Rescissions Rulemaking

NPRM Dave Svendsgaard
919-541-2380
Svendsgaard.Dave
@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Federal Plan for Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Electric Generating Units

NPRM Toni Jones
919-541-0316
Jones.Toni@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Relaxation of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) Gasoline Standard for Birmingham, Alabama

NPRM/Direct Final Patty Klavon
734-214-4476
Klavon.Patty@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Procedural Rule Amendment; Requirement for Certain Pesticide Actions to Publish Notices in the Federal Register

NPRM Cameo Smoot
703-305-5454
Smoot.Cameo@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

N-Methylpyrrolidone (NMP) and Methylene Chloride; Rulemaking Under TSCA §6(a)

NPRM Niva Kramek
202-564-2897
Kramek.Niva@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Revisions to the Public Notice Provisions in Clean Air Act Permitting Programs

NPRM Ben Garwood
919-541-1358
Garwood.Ben@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Definitions of Low Pressure Well and Storage Vessel

NPRM Bruce Moore
919-541-5460
Moore.Bruce@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Lead-based Paint Program; Extension of Renovator Certifications

Final Marc Edmonds
202-566-0758
Edmonds.Marc@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

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March 2015 Action Initiation List

Download the March 2015 AIL (PDF).

March 2015 (as of 3/25/2015)
Title

Abstract
What's This?

Projected Publication Date
What's
This?

Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program - General Revisions

NPRM Lisa Grogan-McCulloch
617-918-1481
Grogan-Mcculloch.Lisa@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Title V Petitions Process Improvement Rulemaking

NPRM Carrie Wheeler
919-541-9771
Wheeler.Carrie@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Relaxation of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) Gasoline Standard for Mecklenburg and Gaston Counties, North Carolina

NPRM/Direct Final Patty Klavon
734-214-4476
Klavon.Patty@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

Additional Air Quality Designations and Error Correction for the 2012 Primary Annual Fine Particle National Ambient Air Quality Standards (2012 PM2.5 NAAQS)

Final Rhea Jones
919-541-2940
Jones.Rhea@epa.gov
Abstract 12 months or less

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Abstracts for the February 2015 AIL

Cellulosic Waiver Credit Price Calculations and Minor Technical Amendments

EPA is taking action to clarify the data sources and methods used to calculate the price of cellulosic waiver credits (CWC). We are also making minor modifications to our regulations to allow the cellulosic waiver credit prices to be announced as quickly as practical after the information on which the CWC price is based is available. Finally, we are announcing the CWC price for the 2014 and 2015 compliance years.

In this action we are also making minor amendments to the regulations to correct references and reinsert language regarding fuel produced from Arundo donax or Pennisetum purpureum, which was inadvertently overwritten by the Quality Assurance Program (QAP) final rule (79 FR 42078, July 18, 2014). Back

Permit Rescissions Rulemaking

This rule will amend the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) permitting provisions at 40 CFR 52.21(w) to remove the “July 30, 1987” date restriction and authorize rescission of permits issued under post-1987 PSD rules that meet the criteria for rescission. Back

Federal Plan for Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Electric Generating Units

EPA is planning a notice of proposed rulemaking for a federal plan to implement greenhouse gas emission guidelines for existing fossil fuel-fired electric generating units (EGUs). The emission guidelines were proposed in June 2014 as the Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units (79 FR 34830; the Clean Power Plan). This plan is part of the President’s Climate Action Plan announced in June of 2013 to reduce carbon emissions from the power sector by 30 percent below 2005 levels. This federal plan serves to: 1) provide a model rule that states can tailor for implementation, and 2) set in place a plan that EPA can implement for states that do not develop a state plan. The EPA sees this federal plan as an interim measure to ensure that congressionally mandated emission standards under authority of section 111 of the CAA are implemented until states assume their role as the preferred implementers of the emissions guidelines. Back

Relaxation of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) Gasoline Standard for Birmingham, Alabama

To reduce gasoline emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC) that are a major contributor to ground-level ozone (smog), the EPA's regulations establish maximum Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) gasoline standards of 9.0 psi or 7.8 psi sold during the summer ozone season based on the state, the month, and the area's ozone designation. The EPA is proposing to approve Alabama's request to relax the RVP standard for gasoline sold in Jefferson and Shelby counties, Alabama ("the Birmingham area") from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi by revising 40 CFR 80.27. This rulemaking is not expected to have an adverse impact on air quality in the Birmingham area. Back

Procedural Rule Amendment; Requirement for Certain Pesticide Actions to Publish Notices in the Federal Register

Currently, EPA’s regulations require the publication of Notices in the Federal Register to provide information concerning registration of a pesticide product with a new active ingredient or new use, announce approvals of specific, quarantine and public health exemptions, and summaries of certain State registrations. When these regulations were promulgated informing the public and other interested parties via publication in the Federal Register was common practice. EPA is considering removing the requirement to publish these Notices in the Federal Register and instead would provide the information on the Agency’s website. EPA intends to develop a consolidated website to post this type of information, which will be more accessible to the public and other interested parties, as well as a more cost effective and efficient mechanism for providing timely updates. Back

N-Methylpyrrolidone (NMP) and Methylene Chloride; Rulemaking Under TSCA §6(a)

Section 6 of the Toxic Substances Control Act provides authority for EPA to ban or restrict the manufacture (including import), processing, distribution in commerce, and use of chemicals, as well as any manner or method of disposal of chemicals. EPA identified and chose n-methylpyrrolidone (NMP) and methylene chloride and for risk evaluation as part of its Work Plan for Chemical Assessment under TSCA. Developmental toxicity effects are associated with certain uses of NMP. Methylene chloride is a volatile organic compound that is classified as a human carcinogen. NMP and methylene chloride are used in commercial processes and in consumer products in residential settings. In the August 2014 TSCA Work Plan Chemical Risk Assessment for methylene chloride and draft January 2013 TSCA Risk Assessment for NMP, EPA identified risks associated with commercial and consumer paint and varnish stripping uses. EPA is initiating rulemaking under TSCA section 6 to address these risks. Specifically, EPA will determine whether the use of NMP and methylene chloride in commercial and consumer paint and varnish strippers pose an unreasonable risk to human health and the environment. Back

Revisions to the Public Notice Provisions in Clean Air Act Permitting Programs

This proposed rule will amend the public notice provisions of the PSD, nonattainment new source review (NNSR), Title V Operating Permit and Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) regulations to remove the current mandatory requirement in these regulations that a public notice be provided in a newspaper of general circulation in the area where the source seeking a PSD, NNSR, Title V or OCS permit plans to locate. The proposed rule will include a public notice requirement that is media-neutral and allows among other mechanisms electronic noticing on permitting authority websites. The option of providing public notice via a traditional newspaper advertisement will still be available to air agencies. This rule revision is anticipated to result in significant annual savings in newspaper publication costs for EPA Regions and Delegated States. Back

Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Definitions of Low Pressure Well and Storage Vessel

This action will address a previously submitted public comment on “low pressure gas well” in 40 CFR part 60, subpart OOOO. The public comment at issue was received following the July 17, 2014, action titled “Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Reconsideration of Additional Provisions of New Source Performance Standards; Proposed Rule.” EPA inadvertently missed this comment when it took final action on the “low pressure gas well” issue in the December 31, 2014, amendments. The December 31, 2014, amendments to the 2012 New Source Performance Standards added language as part of provisions for tanks removed from service and returned to service. This language defined storage tanks “connected in parallel” or “installed in parallel” to a primary tank. The language grouped all such tanks as a single vessel with liquid throughput (and emissions) equal to the sum of the parallel tanks. EPA received administrative reconsideration petitions on this new language. This proposal will address this issue. Back

Lead-based Paint Program; Extension of Renovator Certifications

On January 14, 2015, EPA published a proposed rule that would, among other things, change the requirements for the refresher training course that renovators under its Renovation, Repair and Painting Program must take to become recertified so renovators can take the course online without having to travel to a training facility. In the proposed rule, EPA expressed concern that, by the time a final rule is published, many renovators would have already taken the refresher training that includes the hands-on learning and missed out on the expected burden savings that would result from the rulemaking, and sought public comment on whether the certifications of those renovators should therefore be extended. EPA is developing a final rule that would extend the certifications for this subset of renovators. A separate Regulatory Agenda entry (RIN 2070-AK02) addresses the remaining elements of the proposed rule that EPA intends to finalize later in 2015. Back

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Abstracts for the March 2015 AIL

Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program - General Revisions

This action would improve the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting Program by clarifying rule requirements, enhancing data quality to ensure that the data collected is representative of industry and comparable to the US GHG Inventory, and streamlining requirements to improve implementation efficiency. This action would make targeted technical amendments to municipal solid waste landfills as well as improve and streamline multiple source categories covered by the program. Back

Title V Petitions Process Improvement Rulemaking

This proposal will identify mandatory guidelines on the substance and format of title V petitions submitted to the Agency as well as requirements for the electronic submittal of title V petitions by the specific method identified in the rule. The proposal will set forth a more detailed process for the EPA review of title V petitions, next steps following the EPA action on a petition, and mandated minimum contents of a petition. In addition, the proposal may provide a greater level of engagement with state and local permitting authorities concerning the EPA’s review of a petition regarding state and local title V permits. It supports the Digital Government Strategy issued by the White House in 2012 that calls for the EPA to take advantage of new technology and improve transparency for our stakeholders. The proposed changes in this rule are consistent with feedback from state partners to ensure they have a part in the petition process. It also supports the EPA 2014-18 Strategic Plan Cross-Agency Strategy Goal of Embracing EPA as a High-Performing Organization, which includes E-Enterprise. E-Enterprise is a U.S. EPA–state initiative to improve environmental performance and enhance services to the regulated community, environmental agencies, and the public, in particular conducting two-way business electronically in an integrated way. Furthermore, this rule is responsive to the title V Task Force recommendations and supports Agency-wide efforts on sustainability and is a step forward in the agency’s larger e-Enterprise for the Environment Initiative. Back

Relaxation of the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) Gasoline Standard for Mecklenburg and Gaston Counties, North Carolina

To reduce gasoline emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC) that are a major contributor to ground-level ozone (smog), the EPA's regulations establish maximum Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) gasoline standards of 9.0 psi or 7.8 psi sold during the summer ozone season based on the state, the month, and the area's ozone designation. The EPA is proposing to approve North Carolina's request to relax the RVP standard for gasoline sold in Mecklenburg and Gaston counties, North Carolina from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi by revising 40 CFR 80.27. This rulemaking is not expected to have an adverse impact on air quality in the subject area. Back

Additional Air Quality Designations and Error Correction for the 2012 Primary Annual Fine Particle National Ambient Air Quality Standards (2012 PM2.5 NAAQS)

On December 18, 2014, the EPA designated 14 areas across the country as nonattainment for the 2012 PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). These air quality designations were based on 2011-2013 data and analyses. In this action, which was published in the Federal Register on January 15, 2015 (80 FR 2206), the EPA deferred area designations for ten areas where available air quality monitoring data were not sufficient to determine whether the areas were meeting or not meeting the NAAQS. In this action, the EPA provided a process by which a full year of 2014 data that becomes available early in 2015 could be used in the designation process. Specifically, if any state submits complete, quality-assured, certified 2014 data to the EPA by February 27, 2015, that suggest that a change of designation status is appropriate for any area within that state, and the EPA agrees that a change of designation status is appropriate, then we would withdraw the designation announced in the action for such area if applicable, and issue another or initial designation that reflects the inclusion of 2014 data. With early certified 2014 data, the EPA expects to promulgate initial designations for five of the deferred areas. The EPA also expects to withdraw up to four nonattainment designations and replace them with unclassifiable/attainment designations, and withdraw one nonattainment designation and replace it with an unclassifiable designation. Lastly, the EPA intends to promulgate one minor error correction to the 40 CFR Part 81 table for Pennsylvania for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, which inadvertently listed one county twice. Back

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What is an AIL?

Generally, AILs include those actions that 1) will appear in our upcoming Semiannual Regulatory Agenda and 2) have been approved for commencement by EPA's Regulatory Policy Officer. In rare instances, an action will not appear on an AIL before it appears in an Agenda.

The AILs are a snapshot of the rules EPA initiates each month. Each action appears on only one list. We do not update actions that were listed in previous AILs. For each action, more up-to-date information is available in our Agenda every six months. For those actions that meet the definition of a priority rulemaking, you can access monthly updates via EPA's Regulatory Development and Retrospective Review Tracker (Reg DaRRT). If an action is featured on Reg DaRRT, the AIL will indicate this fact in the "Contact" column by including a link to "follow this rule on Reg DaRRT."


How Do I Access a Past AIL?

Every available AIL may be found in our AIL docket (#OA-2008-0265) on Regulations.gov. AILs are added to this docket as they are posted on this website. AILs older than two months are removed from this Web page and are only available in the docket.


How Do I Know When a New List Has Been Posted?

You can sign up to be notified via email when a new list is added to our AIL docket. To do so:

  • Go to the Docket Details page for our AIL docket (#EPA-HQ-OA-2008-0265) on Regulations.gov.
  • Click the "Notification" icon found in the upper, right portion of your screen. Fill out the registration form that is presented to you.
  • Step 2 of the form asks you to select the types of documents you are interested in. To ensure that you receive a notification every time a document is deposited in the docket, place a check mark in the boxes next to every document type (Rules, Proposed Rules, Notices, Public Submissions, Supporting & Related Materials, and Other).
  • Once you have completed the form, click the "Submit" button at the bottom of the form.
  • You will receive an email with instructions for how to complete the registration process. Make sure you follow these instructions. You will not begin receiving notifications until you do.

Keep in mind that AILs do not post immediately. You can access a given month's list roughly 15 days after the close of the month (e.g., the April 2008 AIL will post sometime around May 15th).


What Does Each Column in an AIL Mean?

Action Title

Self-explanatory.

Stage

The stage of an action describes where we are in the rule writing process, from the very beginning when a rule (or other action) is just an idea to the end when it is published as a final rule (or other action) in the Federal Register. For example, the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) stage announces a proposed rule or modification.

In the AILs, the following acronyms are used:

  • ANPRM - Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
  • Direct Final - Direct Final Action
  • NPRM - Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
  • Section 610 Review - Agency review under Section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act
  • Supplemental - Supplemental NPRM

Contact

Provides the name, phone, and email address for the EPA staff person assigned to this rule. Additionally, if a rule is in EPA's Reg DaRRT website (www.epa.gov/regdarrt/), then a link to the rule's profile will be provided in this column.

Abstract

A brief summary of the action and its purpose.

Projected Publication Date

Since many variables affect how long it takes to write a rule or other action, it is impossible to predict a firm publication date when we have just started working on an action. Therefore, we insert one of two options in the "Projected Publication Date" column: 1) "12 months or less" and 2) "more than 12 months." These options give you some idea of how quickly we expect to complete an action. You may consult our Semiannual Regulatory Agenda every six months for updates to our estimates.

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