News and Analysis
Webinar: Ohio EPA’s Conditional Exemption for Hazardous Waste Contaminated Wipes & Apparel (formerly, Textile Rule)December 21, 2018
This Ohio EPA webinar on Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at 10:00 a.m. will explain the Ohio-specific rule to conditionally exclude contaminated wipes and apparel (that are not currently excluded under the solvent wipe rule) from regulation under the hazardous waste regulations when certain conditions are met.
Apparel would include, but not be limited to, gloves, uniforms, smocks, and coveralls that are laundered and intended for reuse.
The Ohio EPA presenter will be Tammy McConnell from the Division of Environmental Response and Revitalization (DERR).
Register here. 12/17/2018
Ohio EPA recently issued comment to U.S. EPA regarding its proposed guidelines for greenhouse-gas emissions from existing electric utility generating units. The Trump administration proposed the air pollution guidelines known as the Clean Air Act (CAA) to replace the far-reaching Clean Power Plan (CPP) which had been proposed by the Obama administration.
In his cover letter, Ohio EPA Director Craig Butler highlighted the market-driven transformation taking place in the Ohio energy and electric sector. The director wrote: “ … Ohio’s generation mix is being positively influenced by shale gas, renewables and energy efficiency which is keeping costs low, as well as reducing emissions. This is being accomplished without additional regulatory burden …”
Check out this table included in the Ohio EPA comments; it depicts how Ohio CO2 emissions from power generation have been reduced 38% from 2005 levels. 12/13/2018
This week Ohio EPA Director Craig Butler met with members of the OMA Environment Committee. The director provided an overview of his five-year tenure at the helm of the agency. Members talked with the director about a variety issues from agency fees to administrative proposals.
The members also heard an update regarding the U.S. EPA’s ‘Waters of the U.S.’ rule, including the most recent litigation updates and new rules proposed this week by the Trump administration. OMA environmental counsel, Bricker & Eckler, and OMA Connections Partner, Squire Patton Boggs, have summarized the latest on the rule here and here. 12/13/2018
Ohio EPA Director Craig Butler
This week Senator John Eklund (R-Chardon) provided sponsor testimony for Senate Bill 228, legislation which would increase the state fees on solid waste, doubling the municipal solid waste fee from $0.25 per ton to $0.50 per ton.
The fee increase would be used to fund the Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) in each county. SWCDs are independent political subdivisions of state government organized along county boundaries to provide technical assistance to urban and rural land users. An elected board of local citizens provides SWCD leadership. Local offices provide education and programs. Most programs are designed for agricultural and nonpoint sources. Therefore, this bill appears to be a fee increase for almost no new benefit for manufacturers.
There was an attempt to include this proposal in the last state budget and the OMA will again be working to make sure it does not get into the next state budget. 12/6/2018
Each year Ohio EPA recognizes organizations in the Buckeye State for exceptional achievements in environmental stewardship through the Ohio EPA’s Encouraging Environmental Excellence (E3) Program.
Maybe this is the year for your business to be recognized for your commitment to environmental excellence?
The application deadline for the 2019 awards is December 14, 2018.
This week Ohio EPA proposed amendments to three Implementation of Water Quality Standards (Modeling) Program Rules in Ohio Administrative Code Chapter 3745-2:
- 3745-2-04: Determinations preliminary to development of water quality-based effluent limitations
- 3745-2-10: Waste load allocation for ammonia-nitrogen toxicity
- 3745-2-12: Total maximum daily loads
These rules are being proposed in order to comply with the five-year rule review requirement and to incorporate revisions consistent with new requirements for Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) limits passed in last year’s state budget bill.
That bill specifically requires the agency to adopt rules that establish procedures for providing notice to stakeholders and criteria for determining significant public interest in TMDL development.
OMA is on the record (see comment 17) regarding these proposals to ensure that manufacturers and their trade associations can request public hearings on any new TMDLs. 11/13/2018
The Ohio EPA’s webinar regarding Nutrient Water Quality Standards for Ohio’s Large Rivers Early Stakeholder Outreach is online; you can watch the recording here. 11/15/2018
Ohio EPA has multiple stakeholder opportunities with deadlines hitting over the next month. Let OMA’s Rob Brundrett know if you have any questions or would like to comment.
- November 13, 2018, Division of Air Pollution Control (DAPC), comments due and public hearing, Architectural and Industrial Maintenance (AIM) Coatings Rules.
- November 14, 2018, Division of Air Pollution Control (DAPC), comments due and public hearing, Ambient Air Quality Standards.
- November 19, 2018, Division of Environmental and Financial. Assistance (DEFA), comments due and public meeting, 2019 Water Pollution Control Loan Fund (WPCLF) Program Management Plan.
- December 3, 2018, Division of Surface Water (DSW), comments due and public hearing, Pretreatment and Indirect Discharge Permit Rules.
- December 5, 2018, Division of Surface Water (DSW), comments due and public hearing, Storm Water Program and General NPDES Permits (OAC Chapters 3745-38 and 3745-39).
Last week the OMA submitted supportive comments to the U.S. EPA on the proposed update to the NOx state implementation plan (SIP) Call regulation.
This proposed rule would amend the existing NOx SIP Call regulations to allow states to revise their SIPs to replace the current requirements for certain sources to monitor emissions with alternate monitoring requirements. The proposal would also eliminate obsolete provisions and make non-substantive clarifications to the remaining regulations.
In its comments OMA wrote, “The proposal would allow alternative monitoring to costly Part 75 CEMS while still providing the necessary assurance that covered units are achieving the required emission reductions under the NOx SIP Call.”
Ohio EPA also submitted comments supporting the proposed federal rule. 10/29/2018
This would be a new rule intended to contain Ohio’s standards for eutrophication endpoints in Ohio’s Large River Assessment Units. Large rivers are those that drain over 500 mi2.
This new proposed rule would establish nutrient standards for these large rivers. In addition, a target phosphorus concentration is being considered for river segments that are over-enriched as demonstrated by the standard.
OMA’s comments dove into the technical aspects of the proposal and questioned portions of the ESO. OMA requested that Ohio EPA convene a stakeholder group to provide interested-party feedback, expert support, and industry analysis as part of the rulemaking process for this important nutrient rule.
OMA also submitted more general comments in conjunction with the Ohio AgriBusiness Association.
Thank you to the member companies which submitted comments on this issue. And thank you to the OMA nutrient working group members for your help and feedback with the comments.