Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
Table 1 of this preamble is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather lists the types of facilities that the EPA is now aware could be potentially affected by the reporting requirements. Other types of facilities not listed in the table could also be affected. To determine whether you are affected by this action, you should carefully examine the applicability criteria found in 40 CFR part 98, subpart A or the relevant criteria in the sections related to direct emitters of GHGs. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular facility, consult the person listed in the preceding
This preamble consists of three sections. The first section provides background on 40 CFR part 98 and describes the purpose and legal authority for this action.
The second section of this preamble summarizes the revisions made to the specific requirements for the general provisions (subpart A), industrial waste landfills (subpart TT), petroleum and natural gas systems (subpart W) and fluorinated gas production (subpart L) of 40 CFR part 98. It also describes the major changes made to these source categories since proposal and provides a brief summary of significant public comments and EPA's responses on issues specific to each source category. Additional responses to significant comments can be found in the document “2012 Technical Corrections, Clarifying and Other Amendments to the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule, and Confidentiality Determinations for Certain Data Elements of the Fluorinated Gas Source Category—Responses to Public Comment” in the docket to this rulemaking.
The third section of this preamble discusses the various statutory and executive order requirements applicable to this rulemaking.
This action finalizes amendments to provisions in 40 CFR part 98, subparts A, TT, W, and L. The 2009 final GHG Reporting Rule was published in the
In a separate recent action, the EPA proposed corrections, clarifying, and other amendments to subparts A, TT, W, and L on May 21, 2012 (77 FR 29935), hereinafter “2012 Technical Corrections Proposal.” In that action, the EPA proposed several amendments to specific provisions in these subparts to provide greater clarity and flexibility to facilities subject to reporting in 2012. The EPA also proposed an amendment to Table A-7 of subpart A to add a subpart L data element that was inadvertently omitted in the final deferral rule
On January 10, 2012 (77 FR 1434), the EPA proposed confidentiality determinations for data elements (excluding those used as inputs to emission equations) in eight subparts of Part 98, including subpart L. In the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal, the EPA proposed, among other things, four new data elements for subpart L and confidentiality status for those four new subpart L data elements. In this action, the EPA is finalizing the addition of four
The EPA is promulgating these rule amendments under its existing CAA authority, specifically authorities provided in CAA section 114. As stated in the preamble to the 2009 final rule (74 FR 56260, October 30, 2009) and the Response to Comments on the April 10, 2009 initial proposed rule,
In addition, the EPA is making confidentiality determinations for four data elements in subpart L, under its authorities provided in sections 114, 301, and 307 of the CAA. As mentioned above, CAA section 114 provides the EPA authority to obtain the information in Part 98, including the four new data elements we have added to subpart L. Section 114(c) requires that the EPA make information obtained under section 114 publicly available, except where information qualifies for confidential treatment. Section 114(c) excludes emission data from qualifying for confidential treatment. The Administrator has determined that this action (amendment and confidentiality determination) is subject to the provisions of section 307(d) of the CAA.
As explained in the preamble to the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal, our response to comments, and this notice, we believe that it is feasible for reporters to implement the changes for the 2011 reporting year, for which reports are due by September 28, 2012. The revisions that apply to the reporting for 2011 are primarily technical corrections, and provide clarification regarding the existing regulatory requirements or reduce the amount of information that is required to be reported.
In the case of 40 CFR part 98, subpart A, the amendment is merely a harmonizing change to a technical correction finalized in February 2012 for subpart I (see 77 FR 10373). This change is effective for reporting year 2012 and does not affect reporting year 2011. The February 2012 subpart I technical correction required reporters to calculate emissions of certain additional fluorinated heat transfer fluids under subpart I; however, the February 2012 correction inadvertently omitted an amendment to a corresponding requirement in subpart A to include those calculated emissions in the annual GHG report. This action corrects this omission by requiring that reporters include these emissions from heat transfer fluids in their facility level totals reported to the EPA in the annual GHG report. Additionally, as proposed, this rule adds one data element to Table A-7 to Subpart A (Table A-7 lists data elements whose reporting deadline is deferred until 2015). This element was inadvertently omitted in the final deferral rule defers the reporting of one additional input until 2015. Because this reduces the reporting requirements, the EPA has determined that it is feasible for this amendment to apply to the reporting year 2011; therefore this data element would not need to be reported until 2015.
In the case of 40 CFR part 98, subpart TT, this final rule excludes some facilities from the reporting requirements and reduces the burden by making it easier for facilities to determine applicability of subpart TT under the GHG Reporting Rule. The excluded facilities are not expected to emit GHGs since they receive only inert wastes that do not generate methane.
In the case of 40 CFR part 98, subpart W, the amendments include technical corrections that, while important to allow reporters to calculate emissions accurately, do not materially affect the actions facilities must take to comply with the rule. For example, in this action the EPA has corrected the emission factors in Table W-1A of subpart W for the onshore petroleum and natural gas production segment, due to an error in the December 23, 2011 Technical Revisions to the Petroleum and Natural Gas Systems Category of the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule (76 FR 80554, December 23, 2011, referred to hereinafter as the “December 2011 technical corrections final rule”), where EPA incorrectly revised several of the emission factors in this table. This final rule corrects this error but does not materially affect the actions a facility must undertake to comply with subpart W.
In the case of 40 CFR part 98, subpart L, facilities subject to subpart L will report greenhouse gas emissions in a more aggregated manner in 2012 and 2013. This amendment is temporary (i.e., for 2012 and 2013 only) to allow the EPA time to fully evaluate concerns recently raised by stakeholders regarding reporting, and subsequent EPA release, of certain emission data.
As explained above, we have concluded that it is appropriate to have these amendments to subpart A, Table A-7 and subparts TT and W apply to the 2011 reporting year, for which reporting occurs on September 28, 2012. For additional background information regarding some of these amendments, please refer to the Technical Support Document for the 2012 Technical Corrections, Clarifying and Other Amendments to Certain Provisions of the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule proposal, available in the docket for this rulemaking (EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0147-0041).
The amendments in this action do not affect the confidentiality determinations for subpart A data elements finalized in the “Confidentiality Determinations for Data Required Under the Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule and Amendments to Special Rules Governing Certain Information Obtained Under the Clean Air Act,”
This rule does not include confidentiality determinations for subparts A, W, and TT. For the subpart A amendments, we are not making any confidentiality determinations because the data element being added is a subset of another data element in subpart I for which we have already proposed a CBI determination. Additionally, we are not making any confidentiality determination at this time for the subpart L data element added to Table A-7 of subpart A to defer the deadline for reporting until 2015. For subpart W, in addition to deleting an existing data element, the amendments in this action make only minor clarifications to the existing reporting requirements in that subpart, which do not change the type of data to be reported. Therefore, there is no change to the proposed confidentiality determinations for the data elements in that subpart. There are no amendments to the reporting requirements for subpart TT.
In this action, the EPA is amending several provisions in subparts A, TT, W, and L of 40 CFR part 98 to provide greater clarity and flexibility. The amendments are listed in this section by subpart, followed by a more detailed summary of the final amendments to the various provisions and the EPA's responses to major comments submitted on those amendments. We indicate where an amendment is being finalized as proposed and where an amendment differs from that which was proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal. For additional comments and EPA's response to those comments please see the comment response document available in Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0147.
As proposed, this action amends the general reporting requirements of 40 CFR 98.3(c)(4) of subpart A, which specifies the types of data and format for reporting emissions in the annual GHG reports (e.g., annual emissions from each source category by GHG). In addition to the proposed amendments to 98.3(c)(4), EPA has included one additional edit to 40 CFR 98.3(c)(4) that did not appear in the proposal. This additional amendment adds the text “and each fluorinated heat transfer fluid (as defined in § 98.98)” to the introductory sentence of 40 CFR 98.3(c)(4). Although this edit was not proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal, it is being added as a clarifying change to the regulatory language. EPA has determined that this additional edit does not substantively change the amendments that were proposed and is administrative in nature. The amendment to subpart A that was proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections proposal specifies that facilities subject to subpart I must include all fluorinated HTFs listed in Table A-1 of subpart A in the computation of CO
As proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal, we are also amending Table A-7 to subpart A to add a subpart L data element used as an input to an emission equation (Equation L-6) that was inadvertently omitted in the final deferral rule. Table A-7 to subpart A lists the inputs to emission equations whose reporting deadlines have been deferred until March 31, 2015. Table A-7 to subpart A is amended to include the data element, “the mass of each fluorine-containing product produced by the process” (40 CFR 98.126(b)(7)); as is already the case with all other subpart L data elements assigned to the inputs to equations data category, this change defers the reporting deadline for this data element until March 31, 2015.
We received no comments on the proposed amendments to subpart A.
As proposed, we are amending subpart TT to exempt industrial waste landfills that receive only inert materials from reporting under this subpart. As discussed in the preamble to the proposed rule (77 FR 29935, May 21, 2012), this amendment ensures that landfills that are not expected to emit GHGs are excluded from reporting under this subpart. Specifically, we are adding, as proposed, a degradable organic content (DOC) value exclusion (provided in weight percent on a wet basis) as 40 CFR 98.460(c)(2)(xiii).
We received two comments on the proposed amendment to subpart TT. Both comments supported EPA's proposed amendments.
This section contains a brief summary of one of the comments received on the proposed changes to subpart TT and our response. Additional comments and responses thereto can be found in the document, “Response to Comments: 2012 Technical Corrections, Clarifying and Other Amendments of the Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Rule, and Confidentiality Determinations for Certain Data Elements of the Fluorinated Gas Source Category” (see EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0147).
The EPA is finalizing several technical corrections and amendments to subpart W as proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal to correct equations and otherwise clarify provisions in the rule to ensure consistency across the calculation, monitoring, and reporting requirements in subpart W and thereby facilitate reporting. The EPA is finalizing the following technical corrections and amendments as proposed:
• Removing a factor of 1,000 from the denominator of Equation W-6 in 40 CFR 98.233(e)(5) so that the emissions are calculated in standard cubic feet rather than thousand standard cubic feet.
• Providing reporters with the option to take and use more than the prescribed number of sample measurements per unique well tubing diameter and pressure group combination per sub-basin.
• Changing the parameter “FRp” to “FR” in Equation W-7 in 40 CFR 98.233(f)(1) to avoid confusion.
• Amending the parameter “Tp” and its definition in Equation W-7 to clarify that it refers to the cumulative amount of time in hours of venting for each well as opposed to the time for the measured well(s).
• Revising the definition of parameter “SPp” in Equation W-8 in 40 CFR 98.233(f)(2) to clarify that the reporter must take a ratio of casing to tubing pressure.
• Updating Equation W-8 and also Equation W-9 in 40 CFR 98.233(f)(2) and (f)(3) by replacing the subscript “q” with “p” in parameter “SFR” to match the definition of parameter “SFRp.”
• Clarifying that the terms “Vp” and “HRp,q” in Equations W-8 and W-9 are to be monitored per unloading event.
• Clarifying that Calculation Methodology 3 applies to well venting, not “each” well venting and that parameter “W” in Equation W-9 is the total number of wells with plunger lift assist.
• Revising the term “backflow” to read “flowback” in 40 CFR 98.233(g) and (g)(1).
• Adding subscript “s” to several parameters in Equations W-10A and W-10B to clarify that these parameters are at standard conditions.
• Clarifying that the flow volume variable “FVs,p” in Equation W-10B is at standard cubic feet.
• Clarifying that the outputs of Equations W-11A and W-11B are at actual conditions by inserting the word “actual” in the definition of flow rate, “FR,” and also adding a subscript “a” to denote inputs at actual conditions.
• Adding a reference to Equation W-12 in 40 CFR 98.233(g)(1)(iii) in the parameter definition “FRs,p” to convert “FRa” to standard conditions.
• In Equations W-11A and W-11B, clarifying the definition of orifice cross sectional area, “A” to state “Cross sectional open area of the restriction orifice (m
• Providing reporters with the option to take and use more than the prescribed number of sample measurements per sub-basin and well type (horizontal or vertical).
• Amending Equation W-13 to clarify that the output is a sum of emissions from all completions and workovers without hydraulic fracturing within a sub-basin.
• Revising parameter “Es,n” in the parameter description to match the letter case of the term in Equation W-14B, revising the term “Ta” to “Ta,p” in Equation W-14B, and clarifying that the temperature is for each blowdown “p.”
• Revising 40 CFR 98.233(j)(5) to clarify that the term “throughput” refers to “average daily throughput of oil.”
• Revising the definition of “Count” in Equation W-15 of 40 CFR 98.233(j)(5) to clarify that the reporters are to count only the separators or wells that feed oil directly to the storage tank.
• Revising the parameter definition of “1000” to accurately describe the conversion occurring through this parameter.
• Revising the definition of “PR” in Equation W-17B of 40 CFR 98.233(l)(3) to clarify that the production rate is in actual and not standard conditions.
• Removing and reserving 40 CFR 98.233(n)(7) to harmonize the language with the reporting requirements in 40 CFR 98.236.
• Providing the proper notation for the summations in Equations W-23, W-24, W-27, and W-28 so that owners and operators may correctly calculate GHG emissions from centrifugal and reciprocating compressors.
• Amending 40 CFR 98.233(o)(7) to remove the word “thousand” in parameter “EF
• Revising the definition of parameter EFi in Equation W-25 in 40 CFR 98.233(o)(7) by deleting the term “thousand.”
• Amending an incorrect reference in 40 CFR 98.233(r)(2) to “Table W-1A” instead of “Table 1-A.”
• Revising the phrase “meter or regulator” in 40 CFR 98.233(r)(6)(ii) and replacing it with “meter/regulator.”
• Revising 40 CFR 98.233(t) to clarify that reporters do not need to alter their calculation results to standard conditions if the results already reflect standard conditions.
• Revising the definition of parameter “ρi” in Equation W-36 to amend the density value of CH
• Revising the definition of “HHV” in Equation W-40 in 40 CFR 98.233(z)(2)(vi) to reflect the “higher” heating value represented by the acronym.
• Amending 40 CFR 98.236(c)(5)(ii)(D) to clarify that the average internal casing diameter of all wells, as opposed to each well, must be reported.
• Amending 40 CFR 98.236(c)(9) to remove reference to the optical gas imaging instrument.
• Amending 40 CFR 98.236(c)(13)(iii)(C) to replace the units of “cubic feet per hour” with “metric tons of CO
• Updating the incorrect reference to “Equation W-30” in 40 CFR 98.236(c)(15)(i)(B) to read “Equation W-30A,” updating the incorrect reference to “Equation W-30” in 40 CFR 98.236(c)(15)(i)(C) to read “Equation W-30A,” and deleting the unnecessary reference to “parameter GHGi” in 40 CFR 98.236(c)(15)(i)(C).
• Removing the text references to “(a)(4)” and “W-3” in 40 CFR 98.236(c)(15)(ii)(A) by deleting the unnecessary references to “(a)(8).”
• Deleting “and CH4” from the reporting requirements for EOR injection pumps in 40 CFR 98.236(c)(17)(v) to make the data reporting requirements consistent with the calculation procedures in Equation W-37.
• Revising the incorrect title of Table W-1A of subpart W by deleting “Table A-1A” and correcting it to “Table W-1A.”
• Correcting the emission factors in Table W-1A of subpart W as proposed.
• Amending Table W-5 of subpart W to provide the cross-reference for footnote 2, by adding a reference associated with footnote 2 to Vapor Recovery Compressor.
In addition to finalizing the amendments proposed in the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal, the EPA is finalizing several additional corrections to address areas where further clarifications to the subpart W were considered appropriate based on comments received on the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal:
• Removing the factors 365 days and “T” from Equation W-6 of subpart W and adding a new factor “N” for the number of dehydrator openings in the calendar year.
• Correcting the definition of parameter “SPp” in Equations W-8 to state that casing pressure is to be measured for wells with no packer, as opposed to taking the shut-in pressure or surface pressure measurement for wells with no packers.
• Correcting the definition of the term “PRs,p” in Equation W-10A to remove the phrase “under actual conditions, converted to standard conditions.”
• Correcting the definition of the terms “SGs,p” and “EnFs,p” in Equation W-10A to include omitted subscripts in the parameter references.
• Correcting the definition of the term “W” in Equation W-12 by replacing the word “formation” with “combination.”
• Amending 40 CFR 98.233(o)(5), (o)(6), (o)(7), (p)(7), and (p)(7)(i) to clarify that the annual emissions must be estimated for each compressor for each mode-source combination measured in the reporting year.
• Correcting the definitions of the terms “Es,n” and “Ea,n” in Equation W-33 by deleting the parentheses around the terms “FRs,p” and “FRa,p”, respectively.
• Amending 40 CFR 98.236(c)(6), (c)(13)(i)(G), (c)(13)(ii)(C), (c)(13)(iii)(C),
Since the amendments to subpart W finalized in this action do not change the type of information that must be collected, the methods used to collect the data, or materially affect how the emissions are calculated, we are requiring reporters to implement the amendments finalized in this action for the September 28, 2012 reporting deadline.
This section contains a brief summary of comments on the proposed changes to subpart W and responses. Additional comments and responses thereto can be found in the document, “Response to Comments: 2012 Technical Corrections, Clarifying and Other Amendments of the Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Rule, and Confidentiality Determinations for Certain Data Elements of the Fluorinated Gas Source Category” (see EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0147).
The EPA received several comments on the 2012 Technical Corrections Proposal that the EPA has determined to be out of the scope of this rulemaking. These comments were diverse in nature, and covered several provisions within subpart W. Some of the comments were more technical in nature, for example, one comment included a revised definition of parameter “Tp” of Equation W-7 to allow for reporters to use alternative methods such as engineering estimates based on best available data to determine the cumulative amount of time in hours of venting for specific wells. Other comments included more substantive revisions and clarifications to the final provisions, for example several comments were submitted on the monitoring provisions for both centrifugal and reciprocating compressors and included revisions to equation parameters and definitions and address concerns previously raised by reporters. Also, by way of a third example, some of the comments submitted were requests for clarification on the final provisions, for example, one comment included a request for clarification on the requirement in 40 CFR 98.236 for reporting of “annual throughput as determined by engineering estimate based on best available data.” The EPA has reviewed these comments, and although these comments are out of the scope of the 2012 Technical Corrections proposal, the EPA is considering ways to address these comments including possible future rulemakings or development of materials to post on EPA's subpart W Web site.
Equation W-14A calculates the volume of natural gas emitted from blowdowns. When equipment is depressurized, the gas contained in the unique volume expands as it goes from actual conditions (process pressure and temperature) to standard conditions (i.e., atmospheric pressure and temperature). Equation W-14A accounts for this physical change. After expansion (i.e., venting), some gas will remain in the equipment or unique physical volume if the equipment is not purged. This unvented gas should be subtracted from the volume of expanded gas. If the remaining gas in the equipment is purged, then the purge factor in Equation W-14A equals zero and nothing will be subtracted from the emissions calculated earlier in the equation as all of the expanded gas volume has been emitted to the atmosphere. If the remaining gas is not purged, then the purge factor equals one and the unique physical volume will be subtracted as it was not vented and released to the atmosphere. There are several simplifying assumptions in the equation to facilitate its use. It is assumed that the process temperature and/or pressure are significantly different than standard conditions. It is also assumed that the equipment is fully vented to the atmosphere, resulting in the final condition of the gas being at atmospheric temperature and pressure. It is also assumed that the atmospheric temperature and pressure are not significantly different than standard conditions. These simplifying assumptions are true in a majority, if not all cases.
For reporting in 2012 and 2013, we are requiring owners and operators of facilities producing fluorinated gases to report annual total facility-wide fluorinated GHG emissions from 2011 and 2012 respectively in tons of CO
As proposed, this final rule provides that owners and operators of facilities producing fluorinated gases are not required to submit the data elements listed below until March 31, 2014:
• 40 CFR 98.3(c)(4)(iii)
• 40 CFR 98.126 (a)(2), (a)(3), (a)(4), (a)(6), (b), (c), (d), (e), (f), (g), and (h).
Fluorinated gas producers subject to subpart L are required to report only the data elements in 40 CFR 98.126(a)(5) (the methods used) and in paragraph 40 CFR 98.126(j) (facility-level CO
The EPA requires that facilities use Equation A-1 of subpart A to calculate CO
As proposed, the default GWP used depends on the type of fluorinated GHG. For fully fluorinated GHGs, the default GWP is 10,000, which is based on the average GWP of the fully fluorinated GHGs in Table A-1 of subpart A. For the purposes of subpart L, the EPA is finalizing as proposed the addition of the definition of “fully fluorinated GHGs” to 40 CFR 98.128: “Fluorinated GHGs that contain only single bonds and in which all available valence locations are filled by fluorine atoms. This includes, but is not limited to saturated perfluorocarbons, SF
As proposed, we are adding four new data elements to the subpart L reporting requirements. Facilities that use one or more default or best-estimate GWPs are required to report the amounts of CO