KRC Comments On Draft Revisions to STAR Program Rules

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KRC Comments On Draft Revisions to STAR Program Rules  Posted: June 4, 2006

June 4, 2006

Jonathan Trout, Secretary-Treasurer
Metro Louisville Air Pollution
Control District
850 Barrett Avenue
Louisville, Kentucky 40204

Re: Informal External Review
Proposed Revisions 5.14, 5.20 5.23, 5.30

Dear Jon:

These comments are submitted on behalf of the Kentucky Resources Council concerning the proposed revisions to the above-referenced regulations. I apologize that these were not in your inbox by Friday afternoon and hope that they will yet be considered in the development of the proposed regulation revisions.

KRC appreciates the opportunity to review the proposed regulations, and offers these suggestions or concerns:

Regulation 5.14

KRC does not oppose the revision to Regulation 5.14 to remove MEK from the list of Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) for the purposes of the federal air toxics program and from the Category 4 list for the purposes of the STAR program; and the similar removal of EGBE.

KRC does have a concern regarding the revisions to the categories and subcategories of HAP sources under Sections 3-5 of Regulation 5.14; specifically the removal of the HAP category of ?coal and oil-fired electric utility steam generating units.” While KRC is aware that EPA delisted the category in 2005 (70 Fed. Reg. 15994), KRC is concerned with the effect that this delisting will have on the obligations of LG&E to comply with the STAR program in evaluating and assuring the achievement of reductions of mercury emissions sufficient to protect public health from all exposure pathways.

As the District is aware, mercury is a toxic, persistent bioaccumulative pollutant. Fossil fuel-fired utilities are the largest source of human-generated mercury emissions in the United States. While concentrations of mercury in the ambient air are usually low and of little direct concern, transformation of deposited atmospheric mercury to its most toxic form, methylmercury, can accumulate in fish and animal tissues. Because the developing fetus is the most sensitive to the toxic effects of mercury, women of childbearing age are regarded as the population of greatest concern. Children who are exposed to low concentrations of methylmercury prenatally are at increased risk of poor performance on neurobehavioral tasks, such as those measuring attention, fine motor function, language skills, visual spatial abilities, and verbal memory.

EPA’s delisting of the coal-fired utility was premised on the implementation of the Clean Air Interstate Rule and the Clean Air Mercury Rule. The recent Office of Inspector General Report on the lack of EPA data to assure the absence of “mercury hotspots” from the implementation of the CAMR, raises a particular concern to KRC that the delisting of the coal-fired utility category will not adversely affect the LG&E obligation to make needed mercury reductions.

Specifically, KRC requests clarification as to whether LG&E will remain a Category 1 source as a Title V facility, and whether LG&E will still be required to demonstrate achievement of environmental acceptability goals and T-BAT for mercury in the absence of the category being listed as a HAP category. To the extent that the delisting of the HAP source category does lessen STAR program compliance obligations from that source category, KRC opposes the proposed change.

Regulation 5.20

No comments.

Regulation 5.23

No comments.

Regulation 5.30

KRC supports this proposed revision, in order to provide sufficient time for multi-stakeholder involvement in development of strategies to address mobile and area source contributions to the air toxics problem. KRC encourages deployment of monitoring of various sources within each category in order to provide more detailed information on the contribution of both source categories to Louisville’s air toxics problems.

Thank you for your consideration of these comments.


Tom FitzGerald

By Kentucky Resources Council on 06/04/2006 5:32 PM
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