By 2004, Hoosiers may breathe cleaner air because of action taken by the Indiana Air Pollution Control Board. With a vote of 11-0, the board unanimously adopted the Indiana Nitrogen Oxides Control Rule.
"The adoption of this rule will play a major role in making the air in Indiana cleaner and safer to breathe," said Lori F. Kaplan, commissioner of IDEM. "This rule will put controls in place that should, when combined with the actions of the other states, work to meet ozone-based health standards statewide and make a giant stride toward meeting the new ozone standards recently set by EPA."
During the development of the rule, IDEM considered four major principles to ensure a balanced rule: achieve the goal of established NOx emissions reductions; meet approval requirements of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; reduce costs for both industry and the consumer; and encourage the development of a clean, reliable energy supply in Indiana.
Major elements of the Indiana Nitrogen Oxides Control Rule include:
- A 31 percent statewide reduction in NOx emissions from 1995 levels by May 31, 2004,
- A 66 percent statewide reduction in NOx emissions from 1995 levels emitted from fossil-fuel- fired electric plants by May 31, 2004,
- A 55 percent reduction in NOx emissions from large industrial boilers by May 31, 2004,
- A cap and trade emission allowance program that allows the trading of NOx "allowances" between facilities for cost effective approaches to NOx reduction goals,
- Incentives for energy efficiency/renewable sources of power (Indiana is only one of five states to include this type of provision and the incentives are among the largest in the nation),
- An effective continuous emission monitoring system to assure compliance among most large emitters for NOx emission requirements and
- Control requirements for large cement kilns that require either the use of specified technology or an emissions reduction of 30 percent.
The Indiana Nitrogen Oxides Control Rule (326 IAC 10-3, 10-4) is in response to the EPA federal rule enacted in 1998 that requires 22 states and the District of Columbia to submit state implementation plans to reduce the regional transport of ozone and to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions in the affected states.
Nitrogen oxide is a precursor to the formation of ground-level
ozone. About 60 percent of the nitrogen oxide emissions in
Indiana come from large industrial boilers or electric utilities.
LIFE-CYCLE COST ESTIMATES FOR COMMON PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
Every human activity, from raising a dairy cow to building a car, has an environmental impact. The Economic Input-Output Life Cycle Assessment, developed by the Green Design Initiative, Carnegie Mellon (http://www.eiolca.net/) estimates total costs for about 500 common US products and services.
Data are available in 22 broad categories such as textiles, forestry, fishing, and mining. Results (in 14 summary categories with additional detailed breakouts) cover impacts such as electricity, water, and fertilizer usage; pollutant releases; and even associated fatalities.
Visit http://www.eiolca.net/ to see the results.
WAL-MART AGREES TO PAY $1 MILLION STORM WATER FINE
The Justice Department and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reached an environmental agreement with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. to resolve claims the retailer violated the Clean Water Act at 17 locations in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Massachusetts. This is the first federal enforcement action against a company for multi-state violations of the Act's storm water provisions.
The settlement commits Wal-Mart to establish a $4.5 million environmental management plan, to improve the retailer's compliance with environmental laws at each of its construction sites and minimize the impact of its building on streams and watersheds. The settlement also compels the company to pay a $1 million civil penalty.
"We must be vigilant in protecting our drinking water. We must be equally protective of streams and lakes enjoyed by American families. Those responsible for construction sites must control hazardous pollutants from flowing into drinking water sources and waterways," said EPA Administrator Christie Whitman.
The United States alleges that Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart and 10 of its contractors failed to comply with storm water regulations and illegally discharged pollution from several construction sites. The Clean Water Act requires the owners and operators of large construction sites to have permits, which generally require site operators to create and carry out pollution prevention plans to minimize the discharge of pollutants into storm water runoff.
"We expect the retail and construction industries to comply with federal clean water requirements, " said John Cruden, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department's Environment Division. "With this settlement, we are taking an important step to protect streams and lakes across the country."
In its 1998 National Water Quality Inventory to Congress, EPA identifies urban runoff and storm sewers as leading causes of impaired water quality in the United States. Storm water runoff from construction sites can cause silt and sediments to build up in lakes and streams and kill aquatic life. Runoff also can transport pollutants like oil and pesticides into nearby storm drains, into sewer systems, and ultimately into streams and waterways. These discharges may drastically affect the health and quality of a waterway, and untreated storm water runoff may contaminate drinking water and pollute recreational waters.
The environmental management plan that Wal-Mart will establish
aims to avert construction-related pollution. Wal-Mart will
require its contractors to certify that all appropriate storm
water control measures are in place before construction begins at
new stores. The plan also requires Wal-Mart to improve its
oversight of environmental compliance at its construction sites,
conduct sampling at the sites to monitor the level of pollutants
in storm water, and report these findings to the EPA.
JULY ENVIRONMENTAL DEADLINES
Clean Air Act
- July 1
- Excess SO2 emission penalty report due to EPA (40 CFR 72.2, 72.40)
- Compliance certification for acid rain emission limitations due to EPA (40 CFR 72.90)
- July 15
- Surface coating operations for shipbuilding or repair must make volume determinations (40 CFR 63.785)
- July 21-23
- Semiannual report due to EPA for existing sources subject to hazardous air pollution controls for equipment leaks from Groups I and V units (40 CFR 63.182(d)(1-3)) (Report for Group I chemical process units is due on July 22, Group V is due on July 21, Groups II and III on July 23)
Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act
- July 1
- Form Rs or Form As are due for Section 313 toxic chemicals (40 CFR 327). Voluntary revisions to these forms are due by July 31.
Toxic Substances Control Act
- July 1
- Written annual document log must be prepared for facilities that, at any one time, use or store at least 45 kg of PCBs in containers or transformers or 50 or more large high or low voltage capacitors (40 CFR 761.180)