EPA Rolls Back Startup, Shutdown Exemption Prohibition

Law360 (October 14, 2020, 7:44 PM EDT) -- Large industrial sources of air pollution may sometimes be exempted from having to meet emissions standards during startups, shutdown or malfunctions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said, in a reversal of an Obama-era policy.

While the EPA said in 2015 that facilities such as power plants, refineries and other industrial facilities cannot use affirmative defenses, which automatically apply, or separate exemptions instituted by individual states during so-called SSM phases, the agency has reconsidered that position and determined that there are times in which those exemptions can be used, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said in a memorandum posted Tuesday on the agency's...

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