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The Regulatory Watch page will be your source for monitoring and tracking the progress of current draft and final regulatory information.
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Draft Documents
Apr 13, 2021
The period for submitting public comments is being extended by 30 days to allow stakeholders interested in the proposed rule additional time to review the proposed rule and collect information and data necessary for comment. The comment period for the proposed rule that published at 86 FR 9576 on 16 February 2021, is extended. Comments on the NPRM (including requests for hearing) and other information must be submitted by 19 May 2021. POC is Maureen Ruskin, Acting Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor; tel: (202) 693-1950 or fax (202) 693-1678; email: ruskin.maureen@dol.gov. (Federal Register: 12 April 2021 [Proposed Rules] Pages 18924-18925)
EPA published a final rule in the Federal Register on 26 March 2020, to complete the residual risk and technology review (RTR) for the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Landfills source category as regulated under national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP). The final rule also made minor changes to the 2016 MSW Landfills New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) and Emission Guidelines and Compliance Times for MSW Landfills to improve implementation of the sets of rules affecting MSW landfills. In this action, the EPA is proposing technical revisions and clarifications for the NESHAP for MSW Landfills established in the 26 March 2020, final rule. We are proposing further amendments to the 2016 MSW Landfills NSPS to clarify certain requirements of the 2016 MSW Landfills NSPS for existing MSW landfills that have modified but previously triggered the requirement to install a gas collection and control system (GCCS) under related MSW landfill rules. Comments must be received on or before 28 May 2021. POC is Mr. Andrew Sheppard, Natural Resources Group, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-03), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-4161; fax: (919) 541-0516; and email: sheppard.andrew@epa.gov. (Federal Register 13 April 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 19176-19184).
USFWS recently proposed to reclassify the beach layia (Layia carnosa) as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the ESA. They are reopening the proposed rule comment period to give all interested parties an additional opportunity to comment on the proposed rule, and they announced a public informational meeting and public hearing on the proposed rule. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 13 May 2021. POC is Jenny Ericson, Acting Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arcata Fish and Wildlife Office, 1655 Heindon Rd., Arcata, CA 95521; tel: 707-822-7201. (Federal Register 13 April 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 19184-19185)
USFWS propose to affirm the listing of the streaked horned lark (Eremophila alpestris strigata), a bird species from Washington and Oregon, as a threatened species under the ESA. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they again conclude that listing the species as threatened is warranted. They also propose to revise the rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act ("4(d) rule") for this bird. If they finalize this rule as proposed, it will maintain this species as a threatened species on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and continue to extend the Act's protections to the species. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 14 June 2021. POC is Paul Henson, State Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, OR 97266; tel: 503-231-6179. (Federal Register 13 April 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 19186-19207)
Apr 07, 2021
EPA will host virtual engagements beginning in April 2021. The goal of the events is to obtain further public input on EPA's revision to the Lead and Copper rule (LCRR), particularly from individuals and communities that are most at-risk of exposure to lead in drinking water. For more information on each event, visit EPA's drinking water website: www.epa.gov/safewater. Public listening sessions will be held on 28 April 2021 and 5 May 2021, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Eastern). POC is Christina Wadlington, USEPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202-566-1859; email address: LCRR@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 6 April 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 17571-17572)
Apr 05, 2021
A bill to direct the Secretary of the Interior to reissue a final rule relating to removing the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem population of grizzly bears from the Federal list of endangered and threatened wildlife. (Congressional Record: 26 February 2021 [House] Pages H855-H859)
A bill to establish the Green Spaces, Green Vehicles Initiative to facilitate the installation of zero-emissions vehicle infrastructure on National Forest System land, National Park System land, and certain related land. (Congressional Record: 1 March 2021 [Senate] Pages S954-S955)
Apr 02, 2021
A bill to amend title 23, United States Code, to require transportation planners to consider projects and strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (Congressional Record 24 February 2021 [Senate] Pages S856-S858)
Mar 31, 2021
A bill to amend the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to update the Federal purchase requirement to ensure the use of 100 percent renewable energy by 2050. (Congressional Record: 25 February 2021 [House] Pages H725-H730)
A bill to prohibit Federal agencies from purchasing or leasing new vehicles that are not zero-emission vehicles, and for other purposes. (Congressional Record: 25 February 2021 [House] Pages H725-H730)
Mar 29, 2021
A bill to amend the FAST Act to improve the Federal permitting process (Congressional Record: 23 February 2021 [Senate] Pages S821-S822)
Mar 26, 2021
A bill to provide that a project for the deployment or modification of a communications facility entirely within a brownfield site is not subject to requirements to prepare certain environmental or historical preservation reviews. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
USFWS proposes to reclassify (downlist) the Hawaiian stilt (Himantopus mexicanus knudseni) from endangered to threatened under the ESA. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that the subspecies' status has improved such that it is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but that it is still likely to become so in the foreseeable future. They also propose a rule under section 4(d) of the ESA that provides for the conservation of the Hawaiian stilt. Additionally, they also recognize the name "aeo" as an alternative common name. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 24 May 2021. POC is Katherine Mullett, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Honolulu, HI 96850; tel 808-792-9400. (Federal Register 25 March 2021 [Proposed Rule] pages 15855-15876)
Mar 25, 2021
USFWS announced 90-day findings on three petitions to add species to the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants under the ESA. Based on their review, they find that the petitions present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned actions may be warranted. Therefore, with the publication of this document, USFWS announce that we plan to initiate status reviews of the Rio Grande shiner (Notropis jemezanus), Shasta snow-wreath (Neviusia cliftonii), and threecorner milkvetch (Astragalus geyeri var. triquetrus) to determine whether the petitioned actions are warranted. To ensure that the status reviews are comprehensive, we are requesting scientific and commercial data and other information regarding the species and factors that may affect their status. Based on the status reviews, we will issue 12-month petition findings, which will address whether or not the petitioned actions are warranted, in accordance with the Act. These findings were made on 24 March 2021. (Federal Register 24 March 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 15637-15639).
A bill to amend the Communications Act of 1934 to provide that the Federal Communications Commission is not required to perform any review under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 or division A of subtitle III of title 54, United States Code, as a condition of permitting the placement and installation of a communications facility. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
A bill to provide that the deployment of a small personal wireless service facility shall not constitute an undertaking under section 300320 of title 54, United States Code, or a major Federal action for the purposes of section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
Mar 24, 2021
A bill to provide that a project to remove and replace communications equipment or services listed under the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019 is not subject to requirements to prepare certain environmental or historical preservation reviews. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
A bill to provide that a project for the collocation of a personal wireless service facility is not subject to requirements to prepare certain environmental or historical preservation reviews. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
Mar 23, 2021
A bill to provide that a project for the deployment or modification of a communications facility entirely within a floodplain is not subject to requirements to prepare certain environmental or historical preservation reviews. (Congressional Record: 15 February 2021 [House] Pages H511-H514)
Mar 19, 2021
A bill to exempt certain wildfire mitigation activities from certain environmental requirements. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [House] Pages H479-H483)
Mar 15, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to provide that nonnative species in the United States shall not be treated as endangered species or threatened species for purposes of that Act. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [House] Pages H479-H483)
Mar 12, 2021
EPA is proposing to delay until 16 December 2021, the effective date of the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations: Lead and Copper Rule Revisions (LCRR), which was published in the Federal Register on 15 January 2021. EPA is also proposing to delay the 16 January 2024, compliance date established in the LCRR to 16 September 2024. The proposed delay in the effective date is consistent with presidential directives issued on 20 January 2021, to heads of Federal agencies to review certain regulations, including the LCRR. The delay will allow sufficient time for EPA to complete its review of the rule in accordance with those directives and conduct important consultations with affected parties. The proposed delay in the compliance date of the LCRR ensures that any delay in the effective date will not reduce the time provided for drinking water systems and primacy states to take actions needed to assure compliance with the LCRR. Comments must be received on or before 12 April 2021. POC is Jeffrey Kempic, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Standards and Risk Management Division, at (202) 564-3632 or email kempic.jeffrey@epa.gov. (Federal Register 12 March 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 14063-14066).
The EPA is proposing a Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) rule that would require public water systems to collect national occurrence data for 29 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and lithium. This proposed rule would require all community and non-transient non community water systems serving 3,300 or more people, and a representative sample of smaller water systems, to conduct monitoring. PFAS and lithium are not currently subject to national primary drinking water regulations, and EPA is proposing to require the collection of drinking water occurrence data to inform EPA decisions. This proposal fulfills a key commitment in "EPA's 2019 Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Action Plan" (https://www.epa.gov/pfas/epas-pfas-action-plan) by proposing the collection of more drinking water occurrence data for a broader group of PFAS. EPA is also announcing two public meetings (via webinar) to discuss this proposal of the fifth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 5). Comments must be received on or before 10 May 2021. POC is Brenda D. Bowden, Standards and Risk Management Division (SRMD), Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW) (MS 140), Environmental Protection Agency, 26 West Martin Luther King Drive, Cincinnati, Ohio 45268; tel: (513) 569-7961; email: bowden.brenda@epa.gov. (Federal Register 11 March 2021 [Proposed Rule] pages 13846-13872)
Mar 05, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to vest in the Secretary of the Interior functions under that Act with respect to species of fish that spawn in fresh or estuarine waters and migrate to ocean waters, and species of fish that spawn in ocean waters and migrate to fresh waters. (Congressional Record: 5 February 2021 [House] Pages H466-H469)
Mar 04, 2021
USFWS announced a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Arizona eryngo (Eryngium sparganophyllum), a plant species native to Arizona and New Mexico in the United States, and to Sonora and Chihuahua in Mexico, as an endangered species and to designate critical habitat in Arizona under the ESA. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that listing the species is warranted. Accordingly, they propose to list the Arizona eryngo as an endangered species under ESA. If finalized this rule as proposed, would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Plants and extend the Act's protections to the species. USFWS also propose to designate critical habitat for the Arizona eryngo under the Act. In total, approximately 13.0 acres (5.3 hectares) in Pima and Cochise Counties, Arizona, fall within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. Comments will be accepted on or before 3 May 2021. POC is Jeff Humphrey, Arizona Ecological Services Field Office, 9828 North 31st Ave. C3, Phoenix, AZ 85051-2517; tel:602-242-0210. Click here for more
Mar 02, 2021
A bill to amend the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act of 1986 to require an emergency notification meeting in the event of the release of an extremely hazardous substance from a facility. (Congressional Record: 5 February 2021 [House] Pages H466-H469)
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to include a prohibition on the listing of a living nonnative species as a threatened species or an endangered species. (Congressional Record: 8 February 2021 [Senate] Pages S571-S573)
Mar 01, 2021
A bill to require the President to declare a national climate emergency under the National Emergencies Act. (Congressional Record: 4 February 2021 [House] Pages H382-H386)
USFWS is delaying the effective date of a final rule published on 15 January 2021, revising the designation of critical habitat for the northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) under the ESA. In addition, this action opens a 30-day comment period to allow interested parties to comment on issues of fact, law, and policy raised by that rule and whether further delay of the effective date is necessary. As of 1 March 2021, the effective date of the final rule that published on 15 January 2021, at 86 FR 4820, is delayed from 16 March 2021, to 30 April 2021. POC is Bridget Fahey, Division of Conservation and Classification, USFWS, Falls Church, VA 22041, tel: 703-358-2172. https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2021-04209
Feb 17, 2021
A bill to require the Secretary of the Interior to prohibit the use of lead ammunition on United States Fish and Wildlife Service lands. (Congressional Record: 21 January 2021 [House] Pages H220-H224)
A bill to sunset new Federal regulatory rules after 3 years. (Congressional Record: 21 January 2021 [House] Pages H220-H224)
Feb 16, 2021
OSHA is proposing to modify the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to conform to the United Nations' Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) Revision 7 (GHS, Rev. 7), to address issues that arose during the implementation of the 2012 update to the HCS, and provide better alignment with other U.S. agencies and international trading partners, without lowering overall protections of the standard. OSHA has preliminarily determined that the proposed revisions to the HCS will reduce costs and burdens while also improving the quality and consistency of information provided to employers and employees regarding chemical hazards and associated protective measures. The proposed modifications to the standard include revised criteria for classification of certain health and physical hazards, revised provisions for updating labels, new labeling provisions for small containers, technical amendments related to the contents of safety data sheets (SDSs), and related revisions to definitions of terms used in the standard. Comments and other information must be submitted by 19 April 2021. POC is Contact Maureen Ruskin, Acting Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor; tel: (202) 693-1950 or email: ruskin.maureen@dol.gov. (Federal Register: 16 February 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 9576-9831)
Feb 10, 2021
A bill to amend sections 111, 169, and 171 of the Clean Air Act to clarify when a physical change in, or change in the method of operation of, a stationary source constitutes a modification or construction (Congressional Record: 11 January 2021 [House] Pages H120-H123)
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to exclude the gray wolf from the authority of such Act, to remove the gray wolf from the lists of threatened species and endangered species published pursuant to such Act. (Congressional Record: 12 January 2021 [House] Pages H148-H149)
Jan 22, 2021
A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act to prevent a species that is not native to the United States from being listed as an endangered species or a threatened species, to prohibit certain types of financial assistance. (Congressional Record: 4 January 2021 [House] Pages H43-H51)
Jan 19, 2021
EPA currently requires fuel dispenser labels for gasoline-ethanol blends of greater than 10 volume percent (vol%) ethanol and up to 15 vol% ethanol (E15). The label was designed to alert consumers to the appropriate and lawful use of the fuel. EPA is co-proposing to either modify the E15 label or remove the label requirement entirely and seeking comment on whether state and local governments may be preempted from requiring different labels on fuel dispensers. To facilitate the proper storage of E15 in underground storage tank systems (USTs), EPA is proposing to modify the UST regulations to grant certain allowances for compatibility demonstration for storage of ethanol blends. EPA is also proposing compatibility requirements for future UST installations or component replacements that would ensure compatibility with higher blends of ethanol. Comments must be received on or before 19 April 2021. POC is Lauren Michaels, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Assessment and Standards Division, EPA, 2000 Traverwood Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105; tel: (734) 214-4640; email: michaels.lauren@epa.gov. (Federal Register 19 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] pages 5094-5104).
USFWS proposes to reclassify (downlist) Furbish's lousewort (Pedicularis furbishiae) from an endangered species to a threatened species under the ESA. This information is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates the threats to the species have been reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered species under the Act. They request information and comments from the public on this proposal. They will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 16 March 2021. POC is Project Leader, Maine Ecological Services Field Office, 306 Hatchery Road, East Orland, ME 04431; tel: 207-902-1567. (Federal Register: 15 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 3976-3986).
Jan 11, 2021
NMFS, announced revisions to their 9 December 2014, proposed designation of critical habitat for the Arctic subspecies of the ringed seal (Pusa hispida hispida) under ESA. The revised proposed designation comprises an area of marine habitat in the Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort seas. Based on consideration of national security impacts, they also propose to exclude a particular area north of the Beaufort Sea shelf from the designation. NMFS seeks comments on all aspects of the revised proposed critical habitat designation and will consider information received before issuing a final designation. Comments must be received by 9 March 2021. Public hearings on the revised proposed rule will be held in Alaska. POC is Tammy Olson, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 271-5006; Jon Kurland, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 586-7638. (Federal Register 8 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 1452-1474)
NMFS proposes to designate critical habitat for the Beringia distinct population segment (DPS) of the Pacific bearded seal subspecies Erignathus barbatus nauticus under the ESA. The proposed designation comprises an area of marine habitat in the Bering, Chukchi, and Beaufort seas. NMFS seeks comments on all aspects of the proposed critical habitat designation and will consider information received before issuing a final designation. Comments must be received by 9 March 2020. Public hearings on the proposed rule will be held in Alaska. POC is Tammy Olson, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 271-5006; Jon Kurland, NMFS Alaska Region, (907) 586-7638. (Federal Register 8 January 2021 [Proposed Rule] Pages 1433-1452)
Apr 23, 2020
A bill to amend the Communications Act of 1934 to provide that the Federal Communications Commission is not required to perform any review under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 or division A of subtitle III of title 54, United States Code, as a condition of permitting the placement and installation of a communications facility, and for other purposes. (Congressional Record: 10 April 2020 [House] Pages H1882-H1883)
Feb 07, 2019
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing a revision to its response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Michigan v. EPA which held that the EPA erred by not considering cost in its determination that regulation under section 112 of the Clean Air Act (CAA) of hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions from coal- and oil-fired electric utility steam generating units (EGUs) is appropriate and necessary. POC: Mary Johnson, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D243-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tele: (919) 541-5025 and email: johnson.mary@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 7 February 2019 [Proposed Rules] Pages 2670-2704).
Nov 27, 2018
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) proposes to amend the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) to maintain alignment with international regulations and standards by incorporating various amendments, including changes to proper shipping names, hazard classes, packing groups, special provisions, packaging authorizations, air transport quantity limitations, and vessel stowage requirements. Comments must be received by 28 January 2019. POC: Steven Webb, International Program or Aaron Wiener, International Program, tel: (202) 366-8553, PHMSA, USDOT, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, East Building, 2nd Floor, Washington, DC 20590-0001. (Federal Register, 27 November 2018 [Proposed Rules], Pages 60970-61070).
Jul 25, 2018
FWS and NMFS propose to amend portions of their regulations that implement section 7 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. The Services are proposing these changes to improve and clarify the interagency consultation processes and make them more efficient and consistent. FWS and NMFS will accept comments from all interested parties until 24 September 2018. POC is Craig Aubrey, U.S. FWS, Division of Environmental Review, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803, tel: 703-358-2442; or Cathy Tortorici, ESA Interagency Cooperation Division, Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, tel: 301-427-8495 (Federal Register; 25 July 2018 [Proposed Rules], pages 35178-35193).
The U.S. FWS and the NMFS propose to revise portions of their regulations that implement section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The proposed revisions to the regulations clarify, interpret, and implement portions of the Act concerning the procedures and criteria used for listing or removing species from the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants and designating critical habitat. Multiple technical revisions are also proposed to update existing sections or to refer appropriately to other sections. Comments will be accepted from all interested parties until 24 September 2018. POC is Bridget Fahey, U.S. FWS, Division of Conservation and Classification, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803, tel: 703-358-2171; or Samuel D. Rauch, III, NMFS, Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, tel: 301-427-8403 (Federal Register; 25 July 2018 [Proposed Rules], pages 35193-35201).
The U.S. FWS proposes to revise their regulations extending most of the prohibitions for activities involving endangered species to threatened species. For species already listed as a threatened species, the proposed regulations would not alter the applicable prohibitions. The proposed regulations would require the Service, pursuant to section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act, to determine what, if any, protective regulations are appropriate for species that the Service in the future determines to be threatened. Comments will be accepted on or before 24 September 2018. POC is Bridget Fahey, U.S. FWS, Division of Conservation and Classification, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803, tel: 703-358-2171 (Federal Register; 25 July 2018 [Proposed Rules], pages 35174-35178).
May 10, 2018
EPA is providing notice of the availability of data on emission allowance allocations to certain units under the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) trading programs. EPA has completed preliminary calculations for the first round of allocations of allowances from the CSAPR new unit set-asides (NUSAs) for the 2018 control periods and has posted spreadsheets containing the calculations on EPA's website. EPA will consider timely objections to the preliminary calculations (including objections concerning the identification of units eligible for allocations) before determining the final amounts of the first-round allocations. Objections to the information referenced in this notice must be received on or before 11 June 2018. POC is Kenon Smith at 202-343-9164 or smith.kenon@epa.gov or Jason Kuhns at 202-564-3236 or kuhns.jason@epa.gov (Federal Register; 10 May 2018 [Notices], pages 21772-21773).
Oct 16, 2017
EPA is proposing to repeal the Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units (EGUs), commonly referred to as the Clean Power Plan (CPP), as promulgated on 23 October 2015. Comments must be received on or before 15 December 2017. POC is Mr. Peter Tsirigotis, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D205-01), U.S. EPA, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; tel: 888-627-7764; email: airaction@epa.gov. (Federal Register Volume 82, Number 198 (Monday, October 16, 2017)][Proposed Rules][Pages 48035-48049]).
Jul 27, 2017
The EPA and the Dept. of the Army ("the agencies") are publishing this proposed rule to start the first step in a comprehensive, two-step process intended to review and revise the definition of "waters of the United States" (WOTUS) consistent with the Executive Order signed 28 Feb 2017. This first step proposes to rescind the definition of WOTUS in the CFR to re-codify the definition of WOTUS, which currently governs administration of the CWA, pursuant to a decision issued by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit staying a definition of WOTUS promulgated by the agencies in 2015. The agencies would apply the definition of WOTUS as it is currently being implemented, that is informed by applicable agency guidance documents and consistent with Supreme Court decisions and longstanding practice. In a second step, the agencies will pursue notice-and-comment rulemaking in which the agencies will conduct a substantive re-evaluation of the definition of WOTUS. Comments must be received on or before 28 August 2017. POC is Ms. Donna Downing, Office of Water (4504-T), EPA, 1200 Penn Ave NW., Wash., DC 20460; tel: (202) 566-2428; email: CWAwotus@epa.gov; or Ms. Stacey Jensen, Regulatory Community of Practice (CECW-CO-R), USACE, 441 G Street NW., Wash., DC 20314; tel: 202-761-5903; email: USACE_CWA_Rule@usace.army.mil (Federal Register, 27 July 2017 [Proposed Rules], page 34899-34909).
Dec 16, 2016
TCE is a volatile organic compound widely used in industrial and commercial processes and has some limited uses in consumer and commercial products. EPA identified significant health risks associated with TCE use in aerosol degreasing and for spot cleaning in dry cleaning facilities. To address these unreasonable risks, EPA is proposing to prohibit the manufacture, processing, and distribution in commerce of TCE for use in aerosol degreasing and for use in spot cleaning in dry cleaning facilities; to prohibit commercial use of TCE for aerosol degreasing and for spot cleaning in dry cleaning facilities; to require manufacturers, processors, and distributors, except for retailers of TCE for any use, to provide downstream notification of these prohibitions throughout the supply chain; and to require limited recordkeeping. Comments must be received on or before 14 February 2017. POC is Toni Krasnic, Chemical Control Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; tel: 202-564-0984; email address: krasnic.toni@epa.gov (Federal Register; 16 December 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 91592-91624).
Dec 07, 2016
This proposed rule address management of paleontological resources on federal lands under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Interior, and managed by BLM, Reclamation, NPS, and FWS. The proposed rule would address the management, collection, and curation of paleontological resources from federal lands using scientific principles and expertise, including collection in accordance with permits; curation in an approved repository; and maintenance of confidentiality of specific locality data. Comments on the proposed rule must be received by 6 February 2017. Comments on the information collection requirements must be received by 5 January 2017. POC is Julia F. Brunner, Geologic Resources Division, National Park Service, tel: 303-969-2012 or email: Julia_F_Brunner@nps.gov (Federal Register; 7 December 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 88173-88196).
Oct 03, 2016
EPA is proposing to revise provisions applicable to greenhouse gases (GHG) in the EPA's Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and title V permitting regulations. This action is in response to the 23 Jun 2014, U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA and the 10 Apr 2015, Amended Judgment by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (D.C. Circuit) in Coalition for Responsible Regulation v. EPA. The proposed revisions involve changes to several regulatory definitions in the PSD and title V regulations, revisions to the PSD provisions on GHG Plantwide Applicability Limitations (PALs), and revisions to other provisions necessary to ensure that neither the PSD nor title V rules require a source to obtain a permit solely because the source emits or has the potential to emit GHGs above the applicable thresholds. EPA is also proposing a significant emissions rate for GHGs under the PSD program that would establish an appropriate threshold level below which BACT is not required for a source's GHG emissions. Comments must be received on or before 2 Dec 2016. POC is Ms. Carrie Wheeler, U.S. EPA, Office of Air Quality Planning & Standards, Air Quality Policy Division, (C504-01), Research Triangle Park, NC 27711, Tel: (919) 541-9771, email: wheeler.carrie@epa.gov (Federal Register; 3 October 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 68110-68147).
Jul 26, 2016
PHMSA is proposing to amend the Hazardous Materials Regulations to revise certain requirements applicable to the manufacture, use, and requalification of DOT-specification cylinders. PHMSA is taking this action in response to petitions for rulemaking submitted by stakeholders and to agency review of the compressed gas cylinders regulations. Specifically, PHMSA is proposing to incorporate by reference or update the references to several Compressed Gas Association publications, amend the filling requirements for compressed and liquefied gases, expand the use of salvage cylinders, and revise and clarify the manufacture and requalification requirements for cylinders. Comments must be submitted by 26 September 2016. POC is Eileen Edmonson, Standards and Rulemaking Division, PHMSA, U.S. DOT, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, at 202-366-8553 (Federal Register; 26 July 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 48977-49022).
May 18, 2016
EPA proposes revisions to the NPDES regulations to eliminate regulatory and application form inconsistencies; improve permit documentation, transparency and oversight; clarify existing regulations; and remove outdated provisions. These proposed regulatory changes cover 15 topics in the following major categories: permit applications; the water quality-based permitting process; permit objection, documentation and process efficiencies; the vessels exclusion; and the CWA section 401 certification process. Comments must be received on or before 18 July 2016. POC is Erin Flannery-Keith, Water Permits Division, Office of Wastewater Management, Mail Code 4203M, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460; 202-566-0689; flannery-keith.erin@epa.gov (Federal Register; 18 May 2017 [Proposed Rules], pages 31343-31374).
EPA is announcing that the period for providing public comments on the 18 April 2016, proposed "Protection of Stratospheric Ozone: Proposed New Listings of Substitutes; Changes of Listing Status; and Reinterpretation of Unacceptability for Closed Cell Foam Products under the SNAP Program; and Revision of CAA Section 608 Venting Prohibition for Propane" is being extended by 14 days. The public comment period for the proposed rule will now close on 16 June 2016. POC is Chenise Farquharson, Stratospheric Protection Division, Office of Atmospheric Programs (Mail Code 6205 T), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460; tel: 202-564-7768; email: Farquharson.chenise@epa.gov (Federal Register; 18 May 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 31222-31223).
Apr 11, 2016
EPA is responding to a rulemaking petition requesting revision of the RCRA corrosivity hazardous waste characteristic regulation. The petition requests that the Agency make two changes to the current corrosivity characteristic regulation: revise the regulatory value for defining waste as corrosive from the current value of pH 12.5, to pH 11.5; and expand the scope of the RCRA corrosivity definition to include nonaqueous wastes in addition to the aqueous wastes currently regulated. EPA is tentatively denying the petition, since the materials submitted in support of the petition fail to demonstrate that the requested regulatory revisions are warranted. The Agency is also soliciting public comment on this tentative and the questions raised in this action. Comments must be received on or before 10 June 2016. POC is Gregory Helms, Materials Recovery and Waste Management Division, Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery, (5304P), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460; tel: 703-308-8855; email: corrosivitypetition@epa.gov(Federal Register; 11 April 2016 [Proposed Rules], pages 21295-21308).
Final Documents
NOTE: Final regulations are removed from this list annually as they are incorporated into the full-text version of the Code of Federal Regulations. See https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/browse/collectionCfr.action?collectionCode=CFR)
Final Documents
Apr 08, 2021
USFWS designated critical habitat for the yellow lance (Elliptio lanceolata) under the ESA. In total, approximately 319 river miles (mi) (514 kilometers (km)) fall within 11 units of critical habitat in Franklin, Granville, Halifax, Johnston, Nash, Vance, Wake, and Warren Counties, North Carolina; Brunswick, Craig, Culpeper, Dinwiddie, Fauquier, Louisa, Lunenburg, Madison, Nottoway, Orange, and Rappahannock Counties, Virginia; and Howard and Montgomery Counties, Maryland. This rule extends the Act's protections to the yellow lance's designated critical habitat. This rule is effective 10 May 2021. POC is Pete Benjamin, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Raleigh Ecological Services Field Office, 551F Pylon Drive, Raleigh, NC 27606; telephone 919-856-4520. (Federal Register: 8 April 2021 [Rule] Pages 18189-18215)
Apr 07, 2021
USFWS designated critical habitat for the candy darter (Etheostoma osburni) under the ESA. In total, approximately 593 stream kilometers (368 stream miles) in Virginia and West Virginia fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this final rule is to designate critical habitat under the Act for the candy darter, an endangered species of fish. This rule becomes effective on 7 May 2021. POC is Acting Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, West Virginia Ecological Services Field Office, 90 Vance Drive, Elkins, WV 26241; tel: 304-636-6586. (Federal Register 7 April 2021 [Rule] Pages 17956-17992).
Mar 29, 2021
This final rule establishes the initial air quality designations for certain areas in the United States (U.S.) for the 2010 primary sulfur dioxide (SO2) National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is designating the areas as either nonattainment, attainment/unclassifiable, or unclassifiable. The designations are based on application of the EPA's nationwide analytical approach and technical analysis, including evaluation of monitoring data and air quality modeling, to determine the appropriate designation and area boundary based on the weight of evidence for each area. The Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) directs areas designated as nonattainment to undertake certain planning and pollution control activities to attain the SO2 NAAQS as expeditiously as practicable. This is the fourth and final set of actions to designate areas of the U.S. for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS; there are no remaining undesignated areas in the U.S. for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. POC is Corey Mocka, EPA Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, Air Quality Policy Division, 109 T.W. Alexander Drive, Mail Code C539-04, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; tel: (919) 541-5142; email: mocka.corey@epa.gov. The final rule is effective on 30 April 2021. (Federal Register: 26 March 2021 [Rule] Pages 16055-16075)
Mar 25, 2021
EPA is adopting three technical standards developed by SAE International (SAE) for equipment that recovers, recycles, and/or recharges the refrigerant 2,3,3,3-Tetrafluoroprop-1-ene (HFO-1234yf or R-1234yf) in motor vehicle air conditioners (MVACs). The three standards are SAE J2843, SAE J2851, and SAE J3030. This rule adopts the most current versions of these standards by incorporating them by reference into the regulations under Title VI of the Clean Air Act (CAA). This will provide additional flexibility for industry stakeholders that wish to select recovery and recycling equipment certified to these standards. This final rule is effective on 23 April 2021. POC is Chenise Farquharson, Stratospheric Protection Division, Office of Atmospheric Programs (Mail Code 6205T), EPA 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: 202-564-7768; email: farquharson.chenise@epa.gov. (Federal Register 24 March 2021 [Rule] Pages 15587-15596).
Mar 12, 2021
EPA is issuing a short delay of the 16 March 2021, effective date of the National Primary Drinking Water Regulations: Lead and Copper Rule Revisions (LCRR), published in the Federal Register on 15 January 2021. The LCRR will now become effective on 17 June 2021. This final rule does not change the compliance date of 16 January 2024. This delay in the effective date is consistent with Presidential directives issued on 20 January 2021, to heads of Federal agencies to review certain regulations, including the LCRR. The sole purpose of this delay is to enable EPA to take public comment on a longer extension of the effective date for EPA to undertake its review of the rule in a deliberate and thorough manner consistent with the public health purposes of the Safe Drinking Water Act and the terms and objectives of recent Presidential directives and in consultation with affected stakeholders. As of 12 March 2021, the effective date of the final rule published 15 January 2021, at 86 FR 4198, is delayed until 17 June 2021. POC is Jeffrey Kempic, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Standards and Risk Management Division, at (202) 564-3632 or email kempic.jeffrey@epa.gov. (Federal Register 12 March 2021 [Rule] Pages 14003-14006).
Mar 09, 2021
USFWS determine endangered species status for the Missouri distinct population segment (DPS) of eastern hellbender (Cryptobranchus alleganiensis alleganiensis), a salamander species. This rule adds this DPS of this species to the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This rule is effective 8 April 2021. POC is Karen Herrington, Field Supervisor, Missouri Ecological Services Field Office, 101 Park DeVille Drive, Suite A, Columbia, MO 65203; tel: 573-234-2132. (Federal Register 9 March 2021 [Rule] Pages 13465-13475.
Mar 08, 2021
USFWS removed Bradshaw's lomatium (Lomatium bradshawii, also known as Bradshaw's desert parsley), a plant found in western Oregon and southwestern Washington, from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Plants. Their review of the best available scientific and commercial data indicates that the threats to Bradshaw's lomatium have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA. This rule is effective 7 April 2021. Paul Henson, State Supervisor, USFWS, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, OR 97266; tel: 503-231-6179. (Federal Register: 8 March 2021 [Rule] pages 13200-13215)
Feb 09, 2021
On 7 January 2021, FWS, published a final rule ("MBTA rule") defining the scope of the MBTA as it applies to conduct resulting in the injury or death of migratory birds protected by the MBTA. FWS are delaying the MBTA rule's effective date until 8 March 2021, in conformity with the Congressional Review Act (CRA). They request public comments to inform our review of this final rule and to determine whether the further extension of the effective date is necessary. As of 5 February 2021, the effective date of the rule that published on 7 January 2021, at 86 FR 1134, is delayed until 8 March 2021. POC is Jerome Ford, Assistant Director, Migratory Birds, at 202-208-1050. (Federal Register: 9 February 2021 [Rule] Pages 8715-8717)
Jan 19, 2021
EPA is publishing final regulatory revisions to the NPDWR for lead and copper under the authority of the SDWA. These revised requirements provide greater and more effective protection of public health by reducing exposure to lead and copper in drinking water. The rule will better identify high levels of lead, improve the reliability of lead tap sampling results, strengthen corrosion control treatment requirements, expand consumer awareness and improve risk communication. This final rule requires, for the first time, community water systems to conduct lead-in-drinking-water testing and public education in schools and child care facilities. In addition, the rule will accelerate lead service line replacements by closing existing regulatory loopholes, propelling early action, and strengthening replacement requirements. This final rule is effective as of 16 March 2021. For judicial review purposes, this final rule is promulgated as of 15 January 2021. POC is Jeffrey Kempic, Standards and Risk Management Division, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Mail Code 4607M, Washington, DC 20460; tel: (202) 564-4880; email: Kempic.Jeffrey@EPA.gov. (Federal Register: 15 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 4198-4312).
EPA is finalizing amendments to the Standards of Performance for Volatile Organic Liquid Storage Vessels (Including Petroleum Liquid Storage Vessels) for Which Construction, Reconstruction, or Modification Commenced After 23 July 1984. EPA is finalizing specific amendments that would allow owners or operators of storage vessels subject to the Standards of Performance for Volatile Organic Liquid Storage Vessels and equipped with either an external floating roof (EFR) or internal floating roof (IFR) to voluntarily elect to comply with the requirements specified in the National Emission Standards for Storage Vessels (Tanks)--Control Level 2, as an alternative standard, in lieu of the requirements specified in the Standards of Performance for Volatile Organic Liquid Storage Vessels, subject to certain caveats and exceptions for monitoring, recordkeeping, and reporting. The final rule is effective on 19 January 2021. POC Mr. Neil Feinberg, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: number: (919) 541-2214 and email: feinberg.stephen@epa.gov. (Federal Register 19 January 2021 [Rule] pages 5013-5019).
Jan 13, 2021
In this final action, the EPA is finalizing a significant contribution finding (SCF) for purposes of regulating source categories for GHG emissions, under section 111(b) of the CAA for electric generating units (EGUs), and in doing so, reaffirming that EGUs remain a listed source category. The EPA has reached that conclusion by articulating a framework under which source categories are considered to contribute significantly to dangerous air pollution due to their GHG emissions if the amount of those emissions exceeds 3 percent of total U.S. GHG emissions. The EPA is applying the 3-percent threshold to the EGU source category to demonstrate that GHG emissions from the EGU source category would contribute significantly to dangerous air pollution. While EGU GHG emissions exceed this threshold by a sufficient magnitude to warrant an SCF without more ado, the EPA has also, for completeness, analyzed EGU emissions under a secondary criteria framework, which also demonstrates the propriety of the SCF. The final rule is effective on 15 March 2021. POC is Mr. Christopher Werner, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D243-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-5133 and email: werner.christopher@epa.gov. (Federal Registry 13 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 2542-2558)
USFWS are removing the inland population of the least tern (Interior least tern) (Sterna (now Sternula) antillarum), from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife due to recovery. This determination is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial data, which indicates that the Interior least tern has recovered and the threats to the Interior least tern have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered species or threatened species under ESA. Accordingly, the prohibitions and protections provided by the Act will no longer apply to the Interior least tern. This rule is effective 12 February 2021. Stephen Ricks, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Mississippi Ecological Services Field Office, 6578 Dogwood View Parkway, Jackson, MS 39213; tel (601) 321-1122. (Federal Register: 13 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 2564-2581)
Jan 11, 2021
UFWS define the scope of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) as it applies to conduct resulting in the injury or death of migratory birds protected by the Act. USFWS determine that the MBTA's prohibitions on pursuing, hunting, taking, capturing, killing, or attempting to do the same, apply only to actions directed at migratory birds, their nests, or their eggs. This rule is effective 8 February 2021. POC is Jerome Ford, Assistant Director, Migratory Birds, tele: 202-208-1050. (Federal Register 1 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 1134-1165)
Reducing childhood lead exposure is a priority for the EPA. As part of EPA's efforts to reduce childhood lead exposure, and in coordination with the President's Task Force on Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks to Children, EPA reevaluated the 2001 dust-lead clearance levels (DLCL). Clearance levels indicate the amount of lead in dust on a surface following the completion of an abatement activity. Surface dust is collected via dust wipe samples that are sent to a laboratory for analysis to determine whether clearance has been achieved. The post-abatement dust-lead levels are evaluated against, and must be below, the applicable clearance levels. The DLCL have not changed since they were issued in 2001. EPA is finalizing its proposal to lower the DLCL from 40 micrograms of per square foot (µg/ft2) to 10 µg/ft2 for floors, and from 250 µg/ft2 to 100 µg/ft2 for window sills. This final rule is effective 8 March 2021. POC is Claire Brisse, Existing Chemicals Risk Management Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (Mailcode 7404T), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001; tele: (202) 564-9004; email: brisse.claire@epa.gov. (Federal Register 7 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 983-994).
Jan 04, 2021
HMSA is amending the Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR) to revise certain requirements applicable to the manufacture, use, and requalification of DOT-specification cylinders. PHMSA is taking this action in response to petitions for rulemaking submitted by stakeholders and agency review of compressed gas cylinder regulations. Specifically, PHMSA is incorporating by reference or updating the references to several Compressed Gas Association publications, amending the filling requirements for compressed and liquefied gases, expanding the use of salvage cylinders, and revising and clarifying the manufacture and requalification requirements for cylinders. Effective date is 27 January 2021. POC is Eamonn Patrick, Standards and Rulemaking Division, USDOT, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590, tele: (202) 366-8553. (Federal Register 28 Dec 2020 [Rule] Pages 85380-85437).
USFWS is reclassifying the June sucker (Chasmistes liorus) from endangered to threatened under the ESA, due to substantial improvements in the species' overall status since its original listing as endangered in 1986. This action is based on a thorough review of the best scientific and commercial data available, which indicates that the June sucker no longer meets the definition of an endangered species under the Act. The June sucker will remain protected as a threatened species under the Act. This rule is effective 3 February 2021. POC is Yvette Converse, Field Supervisor, Utah Ecological Services Field Office, 2369 Orton Circle, Suite 50, West Valley City, UT 84119; tele: 801-975-3330. (Federal Register 4 January 2021 [Rule] Pages 192-212).
Based on the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) review of the air quality criteria and the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for photochemical oxidants including ozone (O3), the EPA is retaining the current standards, without revision. This final action is effective 31 December 2020. POC is Dr. Deirdre Murphy, Health and Environmental Impacts Division, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Mail Code C504-06, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; tele: (919) 541-0729; email: murphy.deirdre@epa.gov. (Federal Register 31 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 87256-87351).
Dec 29, 2020
EPA is promulgating this final rule to adjust the level of the maximum (and minimum) statutory civil monetary penalty amounts under the statutes the EPA administers. This action is mandated by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended through the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 ("the 2015 Act"). The 2015 Act prescribes a formula for annually adjusting the statutory maximum (and minimum) amount of civil monetary penalties to reflect inflation, maintain the deterrent effect of statutory civil monetary penalties, and promote compliance with the law. The rule does not establish specific civil monetary penalty amounts the EPA may. The EPA's civil penalty policies, which guide enforcement personnel on how to exercise the EPA's discretion within statutory penalty authorities, take into account a number of fact-specific considerations. This final rule is effective 23 December 2020. POC is David Smith-Watts, Office of Civil Enforcement, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, Mail Code 2241A, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460, tel: (202) 564-4083; email:smith-watts.david@epa.gov. (Federal Register 23 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 83818-83821)
Dec 23, 2020
EPA is promulgating this final rule to adjust the level of the maximum (and minimum) statutory civil monetary penalty amounts under the statutes the EPA administers. This action is mandated by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended through the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 ("the 2015 Act"). The 2015 Act prescribes a formula for annually adjusting the statutory maximum (and minimum) amount of civil monetary penalties to reflect inflation, maintain the deterrent effect of statutory civil monetary penalties, and promote compliance with the law. The rule does not establish specific civil monetary penalty amounts the EPA may seek, as appropriate given the facts of particular cases and applicable agency penalty policies. The EPA's civil penalty policies, which guide enforcement personnel on how to exercise the EPA's discretion within statutory penalty authorities, take into account a number of fact-specific considerations. This final rule is effective 23 December 2020. POC is David Smith-Watts, Office of Civil Enforcement, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, Mail Code 2241A, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460, tel: (202) 564-4083; email:smith-watts.david@epa.gov. (Federal Register 23 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 83818-83821)
Dec 18, 2020
USFWS amended portions of their regulations that implement section 4 of the ESA. The revisions set forth a process for excluding areas of critical habitat under section 4(b)(2) of the Act, which mandates their consideration of the impacts of designating critical habitat and permits exclusions of particular areas following a discretionary exclusion analysis. These regulations outline when and how the Service will undertake an exclusion analysis, including identifying a non-exhaustive list of categories of potential impacts that they will consider. This rule, reflects agency experience, codifies some current agency practices, makes some modifications to current agency practice, and responds to applicable Supreme Court case law. The intended effect of this rule is to provide greater transparency and certainty for the public and stakeholders. This final regulation is effective on 19 January 2021. POC is Gary Frazer, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior, Washington, DC 20240, tel: 202/208-4646. (Federal Register 18 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 82376-82389)
Dec 16, 2020
USFWS and NMFS, added a definition of "habitat" to their regulations that implement section 4 of the ESA. This rulemaking responds to Supreme Court case law regarding the designation of critical habitat and provides transparency, clarity, and consistency for stakeholders. This final regulation is effective on 15 January 2021. POCs are Gary Frazer, USFWS, Department of the Interior, Washington, DC 20240, tel: (202) 208-4646; or Samuel D. Rauch, III, NMFS, Office of Protected Resources, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, tel: (301) 427-8403. (Federal Register 16 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 81411-81421)
Dec 15, 2020
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces a 12-month finding on a petition to list the northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) as an endangered species under the ESA. After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, they find that reclassification of the northern spotted owl from a threatened species to an endangered species is warranted but precluded by higher priority actions to amend the Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants. They will develop a proposed rule to reclassify the northern spotted owl as our priorities allow. The finding in this document was made on 15 December 2020. POC is Paul Henson, State Supervisor, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, tel: 503-231-6179, email: paul_henson@fws.gov. (Federal Register 15 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 81144-81152)
Dec 04, 2020
The DOE is updating its NEPA implementing procedures pertaining to authorizations issued under the Natural Gas Act (NGA). These changes will improve the efficiency of the DOE decision-making process by saving time and expense in the NEPA compliance process and eliminating unnecessary environmental documentation for these actions that DOE has determined normally do not have significant effects. This final rule is effective 4 January 2021. POC is Mr. Mark J. Matarrese, Office of Fossil Energy, Mark.Matarrese@hq.doe.gov, 202-586-0491. (Federal Register: 4 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 78197-78205).
This action updates many of EPA's existing gasoline, diesel, and other fuel quality programs to improve overall compliance assurance and maintain environmental performance, while reducing compliance costs for industry and EPA. EPA is streamlining existing fuel quality regulations by removing expired provisions, eliminating redundant compliance provisions (e.g., duplicative registration requirements that are required by every EPA fuels program), removing unnecessary and out-of-date requirements, and replacing them with a single set of provisions and definitions that applies to all gasoline, diesel, and other fuel quality programs. This action does not change the stringency of the existing fuel quality standards. This rule is effective on 1 January 2021, except for amendatory instructions 48, 51, and 52, which are effective on 4 December 2020, and amendatory instructions 16, 18, and 19, which are effective on 1 January 2022. POC is Nick Parsons, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Assessment and Standards Division, Environmental Protection Agency, 2000 Traverwood Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105; tel: 734-214-4479; email: parsons.nick@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 4 December 2020 [Rule] Pages 78412-78538)
Nov 30, 2020
The EPA is amending the TSCA Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) regulations by extending the submission deadline for 2020 reports to 29 January 2021. This is the final extension for the 2020 submission period only. The CDR regulations require manufacturers (including importers) of certain chemical substances included on the TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory (TSCA Inventory) to report data on the manufacturing, processing, and use of the chemical substances. This final rule is effective 25 November 2020. POC is Susan Sharkey, Data Gathering and Analysis Division (7406M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001; tel: (202) 564-8789; email: sharkey.susan@epa.gov. (Federal Register 25 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 75235-75238)
Nov 20, 2020
This rule finalizes amendments to the General Provisions that apply to National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). These amendments implement the plain language reading of the "major source" and "area source" definitions of section 112 of the Clean Air Act (CAA) and provide that a major source can be reclassified to area source status at any time upon reducing its potential to emit (PTE) hazardous air pollutants (HAP) to below the major source thresholds (MST) of 10 tons per year (tpy) of any single HAP and 25 tpy of any combination of HAP. This rule also finalizes amendments to clarify the compliance dates, notification, and recordkeeping requirements that apply to sources choosing to reclassify to area source status and to sources that revert back to major source status, including a requirement for electronic notification. This final rule is effective on 19 January 2021. POC Ms. Elineth Torres, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D205-02), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, USEPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-4347; and email address: torres.elineth@epa.gov. Click for more Information
Nov 19, 2020
USDA, Forest Service is adopting a final rule amending its NEPA regulations. The final rule establishes new and revised categorical exclusions (pertaining to certain special use authorizations, infrastructure management activities, and restoration and resilience activities) and adds the determination of NEPA adequacy provision to the Agency's NEPA regulations. These amendments will increase efficiency in the Agency's environmental analysis and decision-making while meeting NEPA's requirements and fully honoring the Agency's environmental stewardship responsibilities. Public comment has informed and improved the final rule. This rule is effective 19 November 2020. POC is Christine Dawe; Director, Ecosystem Management Coordination; 406-370-8865. (Federal Register: 19 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 73620-73632).
Nov 03, 2020
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have evaluated the classification status of the gray wolf entities currently listed in the lower 48 United States and Mexico under the ESA. Based on that evaluation, they are removing the gray wolf entities in the lower 48 United States and Mexico, except for the Mexican wolf (C. l. baileyi), that are currently on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. The effect of this rulemaking action is that C. lupus is not classified as a threatened or endangered species under the Act. This rule does not have any effect on the separate listing of the Mexican wolf subspecies (Canis lupus baileyi) as endangered under the Act. In addition, they announce a 90-day finding on a petition to maintain protections for the gray wolf in the lower 48 United States as endangered or threatened distinct population segments. Based on our review, they find that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating the petitioned actions may be warranted. Therefore, they are not initiating status reviews of the petitioned entities in response to the petition. This rule is effective 4 January 2021. POC is Bridget Fahey, Chief, Division of Classification and Conservation, Ecological Services, USFWS, Headquarters Office, MS: ES, 5275, Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; tel: 703-358-2163. (Federal Register: 3 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 69778-69895)
Nov 02, 2020
EPA is publishing this final rule to postpone the compliance deadlines for implementation of Phase 2 of the NPDES Electronic Reporting Rule ("NPDES eRule"). The NPDES eRule requires EPA and states to modernize CWA reporting. This final rule also provides states with additional flexibility to request additional time as needed. Further, this final rule promulgates clarifying changes to the NPDES eRule and eliminates some duplicative or outdated reporting requirements. Taken together, these changes are designed to save the NPDES authorized programs considerable resources, make reporting easier for NPDES-regulated entities, streamline permit renewals, ensure full exchange of NPDES program data between states and EPA, enhance public transparency, improve environmental decision-making, and protect human health and the environment. The final rule is effective on 4 January 2021. POC is Mr. Carey A. Johnston, Office of Compliance (mail code 2222A), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: 202-566-1014; or email: johnston.carey@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 2 November 2020 [Rule] pages 69189-69206).
Oct 29, 2020
USDA is adopting a final rule to exempt the Tongass National Forest from the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule (2001 Roadless Rule), which prohibits timber harvest and road construction/reconstruction with limited exceptions within designated inventoried roadless areas. In addition, the rule directs an administrative change to the timber suitability of lands deemed unsuitable, solely due to the application of the 2001 Roadless Rule, in the 2016 Tongass National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan (Tongass Forest Plan or Forest Plan), Appendix A. The rule does not authorize any ground-disturbing activities, nor does it increase the overall amount of timber harvested from the Tongass National Forest. This rule is effective 29 October 2020. POC is Ken Tu, Interdisciplinary Team Leader, at 303-275-5156 or akroadlessrule@usda.gov. (Federal Register: 29 October 2020 [Rule] pages 68688-68703)
Oct 22, 2020
The Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) is amending its regulations to add a definition for electric bikes (E-bikes) and exclude E-bikes from the regulatory definition of an off-road vehicle where E-bikes are being used on roads and trails where mechanized, non-motorized use is allowed, where E-bikes are not propelled exclusively by a motorized source, and appropriate Reclamation Regional Directors expressly determine through a formal decision that E-bikes should be treated the same as non-motorized bicycles. This change facilitates increased E-bike use where other types of bicycles are allowed in a manner consistent with existing use of Reclamation land, and increases recreational opportunities for all Americans, especially those with physical limitations. This rulemaking is effective 23 November 2020. POC: Ryan Alcorn, Asset Management Division, Bureau of Reclamation, tel: (303) 445-2711; email: ralcorn@usbr.gov. (Federal Register: 23 November 2020 [Rule] Pages 67294-67299)
Oct 15, 2020
USFWS reclassify (downlist) the American burying beetle (Nicrophorus americanus) from endangered to threatened on the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This determination is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates that the threats to this species have been reduced to the point that it is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but that it is likely to become so within the foreseeable future. They also finalize a rule under the authority of section 4(d) of the Act that provides measures that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the American burying beetle. This rule is effective 16 November 2020. POC Jonna Polk, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oklahoma Ecological Services Field Office, 9014 East 21st St., Tulsa, OK 74129; tel: 918-382-4500. (Federal Register 15 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 65241-65261)
Oct 13, 2020
EPA is correcting a final rule that appeared in the Federal Register on 26 March 2020. The EPA finalized the residual risk and technology review (RTR) conducted for the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Landfills source category regulated under national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP). This action corrects inadvertent errors in the cross-referencing and formatting in the Federal Register; as well as clarifies two operational and reporting requirements in the final rule. This action also revises the heading of 40 CFR part 60, subpart WWW as described in the final rule. The corrections and clarifications described in this action do not affect the substantive requirements of the regulations or the results of the RTR conducted for the MSW Landfills source category. This final rule is effective on 12 November 2020. POC is Andrew Sheppard, Natural Resources Group, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-03), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-4161; fax: (919) 541-0516; and email: Sheppard.Andrew@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 13 October 2020 [Rule] Page 64398-64401).
USFWS announced a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly (Atlantea tulita), a species from Puerto Rico, as a threatened species and designate critical habitat under the ESA. USFWS propose to list the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act ("4(d) rule"). If they finalize this rule as proposed, it would add this species to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to the species. They also propose to designate critical habitat for the Puerto Rican harlequin butterfly under the Act. In total, approximately 41,266 acres (16,699.8 hectares) in six units in the municipalities of Isabela, Quebradillas, Camuy, Arecibo, Utuado, Florida, Ciales, Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, and Yauco are within the boundaries of the proposed critical habitat designation. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 14 December 2020. POC is Edwin Muñiz, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Register: 13 October 2020 [Proposed Rule] Pages 64908-64937)
USFWS withdraw the proposed rule to list the distinct population segment (DPS) of the North American wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) occurring in the contiguous United States as a threatened species under the ESA. This withdrawal is based on their conclusion that the factors affecting the species as identified in the proposed rule are not as significant as believed at the time of the proposed rule. They base this conclusion on our analysis of current and future threat factors. They also find that North American wolverines occurring in the contiguous United States do not qualify as a DPS. Therefore, They are withdrawing our proposal to list the wolverine within the contiguous United States as a threatened species. The proposed rule that published 4 February 2013 (78 FR 7864), to list the distinct population segment of the North American wolverine occurring in the contiguous United States as a threatened species is withdrawn on 13 October 2020. POC is Jodi Bush, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Montana Ecological Services Office. (Federal Register 13 October 2020 [Proposed Rule] Pages 64618-64648).
Oct 08, 2020
USFWS determined threatened species status under the ESA for the coastal distinct population segment (DPS) of Pacific marten (Martes caurina), a small mammal from coastal California and Oregon. They also issue final regulations that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of this DPS under section 4(d) of the Act (a "4(d) rule"). This final rule extends the Act's protections to the coastal DPS of Pacific marten, subject to the 4(d) rule's exceptions. This rule is effective 9 November 2020. POC is Dan Everson, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arcata Fish and Wildlife Office. (Federal Register 8 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 63806-63831)
USFWS determined threatened species status under the ESA for the coastal distinct population segment (DPS) of Pacific marten (Martes caurina), a small mammal from coastal California and Oregon. They also issue final regulations that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of this DPS under section 4(d) of the Act (a "4(d) rule"). This final rule extends the Act's protections to the coastal DPS of Pacific marten, subject to the 4(d) rule's exceptions. This rule is effective 9 November 2020. POC is Dan Everson, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arcata Fish and Wildlife Office. (Federal Register 8 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 63806-63831)
USFWS determined threatened species status for the eastern black rail (Laterallus jamaicensis jamaicensis) under the ESA. Accordingly, they list the eastern black rail, a bird subspecies known from as many as 35 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Canada, Brazil, and several countries in the Caribbean and Central America, as a threatened species under the Act. The effect of this regulation will be to add this subspecies to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. They also finalize a rule under the authority of section 4(d) of the Act that provides measures that are necessary and advisable to provide for the conservation of the eastern black rail. They have determined that designation of critical habitat for the eastern black rail is not prudent. This rule is effective 9 November 2020. POC is Tom McCoy, Field Supervisor, South Carolina Ecological Services Field Office, 176 Croghan Spur Road, Suite 200, Charleston, SC 29407; tel: 843-727-4707. (Federal Register: 8 October 2020 [Rule] Pages 63764-63803)
Sep 30, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the trispot darter (Etheostoma trisella) under the ESA. They are designating as critical habitat for this species six units, totaling approximately 175.4 miles (282.3 kilometers) of streams and rivers and 9,929 acres (4,018 hectares), in Calhoun, Cherokee, Etowah, and St. Clair Counties in Alabama; Gordon, Murray, and Whitfield Counties in Georgia; and Bradley and Polk Counties in Tennessee. This rule extends the Act's protections to the trispot darter's designated critical habitat. This rule is effective 30 October 2020. POC is William Pearson, Field Supervisor, USFWS, tel: 251-441-5184. (Federal Register: 30 September 2020 (Rule) Pages 61619-61638)
Sep 25, 2020
EPA is designating one ocean dredged material disposal site (ODMDS), the Isles of Shoals North Disposal Site (IOSN), located in the Gulf of Maine off the coast of southern Maine and New Hampshire, pursuant to the Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA). This action is necessary to serve the long-term need for an ODMDS for the possible future disposal of suitable dredged material from harbors and navigation channels in southern Maine, New Hampshire, and northern Massachusetts. The basis for this action is described herein and in the Final Environmental Assessment (FEA). The FEA identifies designation of the IOSN as the preferred alternative from the range of options considered. The Site Management and Monitoring Plan (SMMP) is provided as Appendix G of the FEA. The Final rule is effective on 26 October 2020. POC is Ms. Regina Lyons, EPA, Region 1, 5 Post Office Square, Suite 100, Mail Code: 06-1, Boston, MA 02109-3912, tel: (617) 918-1557; email: lyons.regina@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 25 September 2020 [Rule] Pages 60370-60383)
Sep 09, 2020
EPA is finalizing amendments to the electronic reporting requirements for the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Coal- and Oil-Fired Electric Utility Steam Generating Units (also known as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS)). This action revises and streamlines the electronic data reporting requirements of MATS, increases data transparency by requiring use of one electronic reporting system instead of two separate systems, and provides enhanced access to MATS data. No new monitoring requirements are imposed by this final action; instead, this action reduces reporting burden, increases MATS data flow and usage, makes it easier for inspectors and auditors to assess compliance, and encourages wider use of continuous emissions monitoring systems (CEMS) for MATS compliance. In addition, this final action extends the current deadline for alternative electronic data submission via portable document format (PDF) files through 31 December 2023. This final rule is effective on 9 September 2020. Mr. Barrett Parker, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D243-05), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; tel: (919) 541-5635; email: parker.barrett@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 9 September 2020 [Rule] Pages 55744-55780)
Sep 08, 2020
EPA is taking final action to update a portion of the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Air Regulations. Requirements applying to OCS sources located within 25 miles of states' seaward boundaries must be updated periodically to remain consistent with the requirements of the corresponding onshore area (COA), as mandated by the Clean Air Act (CAA). The portion of the OCS air regulations that is being updated pertains to the requirements for OCS sources subject to requirements of the State of Alaska. The State of Alaska's requirements discussed in this document and listed in the appendix to the Federal OCS air regulations, are approved for incorporated into the compilation of state provisions that is incorporated by reference. This rule is effective on 8 October 2020. POC is Natasha Greaves, (206) 553-7079, or by email at greaves.natasha@epa.gov. (Federal Register 8 September 2020 [Final] Pages 55377-55380)
Sep 01, 2020
USFWS have reconsidered whether designating critical habitat for the rusty patched bumble bee (Bombus affinis) would be prudent. On 11 January 2017, they published a final rule listing the rusty patched bumble bee as an endangered species under the ESA. In that final rule, they stated that designation of critical habitat may be prudent, but not determinable. They have now determined that such a designation would not be prudent. The present or threatened destruction, modification, or curtailment of habitat is not the primary threat to the species, and the availability of habitat does not limit the conservation of the rusty patched bumble bee now, nor will it in the future. The determination announced in this document was made on 1 September 2020. POC is Sarah Quamme, Field Supervisor, Minnesota-Wisconsin Ecological Services Field Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 4101 American Blvd. E, Bloomington, MN 55425; tel: 952-252-0092. (Federal Register: 1 September 2020 [Rule] Pages 54281-54285)
Aug 11, 2020
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is correcting a final rule that appeared in the Federal Register on 10 July 2020. The final rule amends existing special use regulations to implement section 512 of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, as added by section 211 of division O, Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 (hereinafter "section 512"). Section 512 governs the development and approval of operating plans and agreements for maintenance and vegetation management of electric transmission and distribution line facilities (powerline facilities) on National Forest System (NFS) lands inside the linear boundary of special use authorizations for powerline facilities and on abutting NFS lands to remove or prune hazard trees. Effective 10 August 2020. POC is Reggie Woodruff, Energy Program Manager, Lands and Realty Management, 202-205-1196 or reginal.woodruff@usda.gov. (Federal Registry: 11 August 2020 [Rule] pages 48475-48476)
Jul 23, 2020
USFWS announced findings that four species are not warranted for listing as endangered or threatened species under the ESA. After a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, USFWS find that it is not warranted at this time to list the Upper Missouri River DPS of Arctic grayling, Elk River crayfish, rattlesnake-master borer moth, and northern Virginia well amphipod. The findings in this document were made on 23 July 2020. (Federal Register: 23 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 44478-44483).
Jul 22, 2020
On 7 July 2020, the EPA revised the NESHAP: Organic Liquids Distribution (Non-Gasoline) Residual Risk and Technology Review. A set of amendatory instructions and one reference to a standard approved for incorporation by reference were removed during the review and publication process but the related standard reference was not removed. In addition, subsequent amendatory instructions were not properly revised to reflect the edits. This document corrects the final regulations. This final rule is effective on 22 July 2020. The incorporation by reference (IBR) of certain publications listed in the rule was approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of 7 July 2020. POC is Mr. Neil Feinberg, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-2214; and email: feinberg.stephen@epa.gov (Federal Register: 22 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 44216-44217)
Jul 21, 2020
EPA is announcing its withdrawal of the 2011 determination to regulate perchlorate in accordance with the SDWA. On 11 February 2011, the EPA published a Federal Register document in which the Agency determined that perchlorate met the SDWA's criteria for regulating a contaminant. On 26 June 2019, the EPA published a proposed national primary drinking water regulation (NPDWR) for perchlorate and requested public comments on multiple alternative actions, including the alternative of withdrawing the 2011 regulatory determination for perchlorate. The EPA has determined that perchlorate does not occur "with a frequency and at levels of public health concern" within the meaning of the SDWA. In addition, in the judgment of the EPA Administrator, regulation of perchlorate does not present a "meaningful opportunity for health risk reduction for persons served by public water systems." Accordingly, the EPA will not issue a NPDWR for perchlorate at this time. For purposes of judicial review, the regulatory determination in this document is issued as of 21 July 2020. POC is Samuel Hernandez, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, Standards and Risk Management Division (Mail Code 4607M), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: (202) 564-1735; email: hernandez.samuel@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 21 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 43990-44002)
EPA and DoD are promulgating discharge performance standards for 11 discharges incidental to the normal operation of a vessel of the Armed Forces in the navigable waters of the United States, the territorial seas, and the contiguous zone. When implemented, the discharge performance standards will reduce the adverse environmental impacts associated with the vessel discharges, stimulate the development of improved vessel pollution control devices, and advance the development of environmentally sound vessels of the Armed Forces. The 11 discharges addressed by the final rule include the following: Catapult water brake tank and post-launch retraction exhaust, controllable pitch propeller hydraulic fluid, deck runoff, firemain systems, graywater, hull coating leachate, motor gasoline and compensating discharge, sonar dome discharge, submarine bilgewater, surface vessel bilgewater/oil-water separator effluent, and underwater ship husbandry. This final rule is effective on 17 August 2020. POC is Katherine B. Weiler, Oceans and Coastal Management Branch (4504T), U.S. EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; (202) 566-1280; weiler.katherine@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 17 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 43465-43478).
Jul 16, 2020
CEQ issued this final rule to update its regulations for Federal agencies to implement the NEPA. CEQ has not comprehensively updated its regulations since their promulgation in 1978, more than four decades ago. This final rule comprehensively updates, modernizes, and clarifies the regulations to facilitate more efficient, effective, and timely NEPA reviews by Federal agencies in connection with proposals for agency action. The rule will improve interagency coordination in the environmental review process, promote earlier public involvement, increase transparency, and enhance the participation of States, Tribes, and localities. The amendments will advance the original goals of the CEQ regulations to reduce paperwork and delays, and promote better decisions consistent with the national environmental policy set forth in section 101 of NEPA. This is a major rule subject to congressional review. The effective date is 14 September 2020. POC is Viktoria Z. Seale, Chief of Staff and General Counsel, 202-395-5750, NEPA-Update@ceq.eop.gov. (Federal Register: 16 July 2020 [Rule] pages 43304-43376)
Jul 14, 2020
EPA is correcting existing regulatory language for the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program. EPA is making corrections that update identifiers, formulas, and names for certain TRI-listed chemicals, and updating the text that identifies which chemicals the 0.1 percent de minimis concentration applies to in order to remedy a cross-reference to a no-longer-accurate Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulatory citation. These corrections maintain previous regulatory actions and do not alter existing reporting requirements or impact compliance burdens or costs. This final rule is effective on 14 July 2020. POC is Daniel Bushman, Toxics Release Inventory Program Division, Mailcode 7410M, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001; tel: (202) 566-0743; email: bushman.daniel@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 14 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 42311-42336).
OSHA is amending its existing general industry standard for occupational exposure to beryllium and beryllium compounds to clarify certain provisions and simplify or improve compliance. The revisions in this final rule are designed to maintain or enhance worker protections overall by ensuring that the rule is well understood and compliance is more straightforward. This final rule becomes effective on 14 September 2020. POC is Ms. Maureen Ruskin, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, Occupational Safety and Health Administration; tel: (202) 693-1950; email: ruskin.maureen@dol.gov. (Federal Registry: 14 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 42582-42628).
Jul 10, 2020
This action finalizes the residual risk and technology review (RTR) conducted for the Site Remediation source category regulated under NESHAP. The EPA is finalizing the proposed determination that risks due to emissions of air toxics from site remediation sources are acceptable and that no revision to the standards is required to provide an ample margin of safety to protect public health. Based on the results of our technology review, we are promulgating the proposed changes to the leak detection and repair (LDAR) program.. Finally, we are making minor clarifications and corrections. The final revisions to the rule will increase the level of emissions control and environmental protection provided by the Site Remediation NESHAP. This final rule is effective on 10 July 2020. POC is Matthew Witosky, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-05), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; telephone number: (919) 541-2865; fax number: (919) 541-0516; and email address: witosky.matthew@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 10 July 2020 [Rule] pages 41680-41714).
Jul 07, 2020
The EPA is finalizing updates to the regulations for the identification of ignitable hazardous waste under the RCRA and to modernize the RCRA test methods that currently require the use of mercury thermometers. These revisions provide greater clarity to hazardous waste identification, provide flexibility in testing requirements, improve environmental compliance, and, thereby, enhance protection of human health and the environment. This final rule is effective on 8 September 2020. POC is Daniel Fagnant, Materials Recovery and Waste Management Division, Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery (5304P), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: 703-308-0319; email: fagnant.daniel@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 7 June 2020 [Rule] pages 40594-40608).
his action finalizes the residual risk and technology review (RTR) conducted for the Organic Liquids Distribution (Non-Gasoline) (OLD) source category regulated under National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is finalizing amendments to the storage tank requirements as a result of the RTR. In addition, we are taking final action to correct and clarify regulatory provisions related to emissions during periods of startup, shutdown, and malfunction (SSM); add requirements for electronic reporting of performance test results and reports, performance evaluation reports, compliance reports, and Notification of Compliance Status (NOCS) reports; add operational requirements for flares; and make other minor technical improvements. We estimate that these amendments will reduce emissions of hazardous air pollutants (HAP) from this source category by 186 tons per year (tpy), which represents an approximate 8 percent reduction of HAP emissions from the source category. This final rule is effective on 7 July 2020. POC is Mr. Neil Feinberg, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-2214 and email: feinberg.stephen@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 7 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 40740-40791)
Jun 30, 2020
USFWS designate critical habitat for the elfin-woods warbler (Setophaga angelae) under the ESA of 1973. In total, approximately 27,488 acres (11,125 hectares) in the Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, Yauco, Río Grande, Canóvanas, Las Piedras, Naguabo, Ceiba, Cayey, San Lorenzo, Guayama, and Patillas municipalities in Puerto Rico fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to extend the Act's protections to the elfin-woods warbler's critical habitat. This rule is effective on 30 July 2020. POC is Marelisa Rivera, Deputy Field Supervisor, USFWS, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Registry: 30 June 2020 [Rule] Pages 39077-39095)
USFWS designate critical habitat for the elfin-woods warbler (Setophaga angelae) under the ESA of 1973. In total, approximately 27,488 acres (11,125 hectares) in the Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, Yauco, Río Grande, Canóvanas, Las Piedras, Naguabo, Ceiba, Cayey, San Lorenzo, Guayama, and Patillas municipalities in Puerto Rico fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to extend the Act's protections to the elfin-woods warbler's critical habitat. This rule is effective on 30 July 2020. POC is Marelisa Rivera, Deputy Field Supervisor, USFWS, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Registry: 30 June 2020 [Rule] Pages 39077-39095)
USFWS designate critical habitat for the elfin-woods warbler (Setophaga angelae) under the ESA of 1973. In total, approximately 27,488 acres (11,125 hectares) in the Maricao, San Germán, Sabana Grande, Yauco, Río Grande, Canóvanas, Las Piedras, Naguabo, Ceiba, Cayey, San Lorenzo, Guayama, and Patillas municipalities in Puerto Rico fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to extend the Act's protections to the elfin-woods warbler's critical habitat. This rule is effective on 30 July 2020. POC is Marelisa Rivera, Deputy Field Supervisor, USFWS, Caribbean Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301 km 5.1, Boquerón, PR 00622; tel: 787-851-7297. (Federal Registry: 30 June 2020 [Rule] Pages 39077-39095)
Jun 23, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the Sonoyta mud turtle (Kinosternon sonoriense longifemorale) under the ESA. In total, 12.28 acres (4.97 hectares) in Pima County, Arizona, located entirely within the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. This rule extends the Act's protections to this subspecies' designated critical habitat. This rule is effective on 23 July 2020. POC is Jeff Humphrey, Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arizona Ecological Services Field Office, 9828 North 31st Ave. #C3, Phoenix, AZ 85051-2517; 602-242-0210. (Federal Register: 23 July 2020 [Rule] Pages 37576-37590).
Jun 22, 2020
EPA is adding 172 per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to the list of toxic chemicals subject to reporting under section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and section 6607 of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA). EPA is also setting a manufacture, processing, and otherwise use reporting threshold of 100 pounds for each PFAS being added to the list. These actions are being taken to comply with section 7321 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 enacted on 20 December 2019. As this action is being taken to conform the regulations to a Congressional legislative mandate, notice and comment rulemaking is unnecessary, and this rule is effective immediately. This rule is effective 22 June 2020. POC is Daniel R. Bushman, Toxics Release Inventory Program Division, Mailcode 7410M, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460-0001; tel: (202) 566-0743; email: bushman.daniel@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 22 June 2020 [Rule] Pages 37354-37364).
Jun 11, 2020
EPA cancels the final designation of the original Wilmington, North Carolina Ocean Dredged Material Disposal Site (ODMDS), referred to as the 1987 Wilmington ODMDS, pursuant to the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA), as amended. The 1987 Wilmington ODMDS, which was designated in 1987, is in the Atlantic Ocean offshore Wilmington, North Carolina. This action is being taken because the 1987 Wilmington ODMDS was previously replaced in 2002 by the existing New Wilmington ODMDS and is no longer needed. In addition, this action changes the name of New Wilmington ODMDS to the Wilmington, North Carolina ODMDS. This rule is effective 13 July 2020. POC is Gary W. Collins, EPA, Region 4, Water Division, Oceans and Estuarine Management Section, 61 Forsyth Street, Atlanta, Georgia 30303; tel: (404) 562-9395; email: collins.garyw@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 11 June 2020 [Rule] pages 35564-35566)
USFWS are removing the Borax Lake chub (currently listed as Gila boraxobius), a fish native to Oregon, from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife on the basis of recovery. This final rule is based on a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates that the threats to the Borax Lake chub have been eliminated or reduced to the point where the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA. This rule is effective 13 July 2020. POC is Paul Henson, State Supervisor, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, OR 97266; tel: 503-231-6179. (Federal Register: 11 June 2020 [Rule] pages 35574-35594)
May 22, 2020
The EPA is revising its response to the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Michigan v. EPA, which held that the EPA erred by not considering cost in its determination that regulation under section 112 of the CAA of HAP emissions from coal- and oil-fired electric utility steam generating units (EGUs) is appropriate and necessary. This rule is effective 22 May 2020. POC is Mary Johnson, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D243-01), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-5025; email: johnson.mary@epa.gov. [Federal Register: 22 May 2020 [Rules and Regulations] Pages 31286-31320)
May 20, 2020
USFWS determined endangered species status under the ESA for the Southern Sierra Nevada Distinct Population Segment (DPS) of fisher (Pekania pennanti). This DPS occurs in California. The effect of this regulation will be to add this DPS to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. This rule is effective 5 June 2020. POC is Jenny Ericson, Field Supervisor, Yreka Fish and Wildlife Office, telephone: 530-842-5763. (Federal Register: 15 May 2020 [Rule] pages 29532-29589)
May 18, 2020
USACE, as part of an interagency effort with the EPA, the FWS and the NRCS, is announcing the availability of the final 2018 National Wetland Plant List (NWPL). The NWPL provides plant species indicator status ratings, which are used in determining whether the hydrophytic vegetation factor is met when conducting wetland delineations under the Clean Water Act and wetland determinations under the Wetland Conservation Provisions of the Food Security Act. The list will become effective on 18 May 2020 and will be used in any wetland delineations performed after this date. Delineations completed prior to this date may still use the 2016 NWPL. POC is Brianne McGuffie, Headquarters, USACE, Operations and Regulatory Community of Practice, Washington, DC 20314-1000; tele: 202-761-4750; email: brianne.e.mcguffie@usace.army.mil. (Federal Register 18 May 2020 [Final Rule] Pages 29689-29691)
May 05, 2020
USFWS determined endangered species status under the ESA, for the island marble butterfly (Euchloe ausonides insulanus) and designate critical habitat. In total, approximately 812 acres (329 hectares) on the south end of San Juan Island, San Juan County, Washington, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. This rule is effective 4 June 2020. POC is Brad Thompson, Acting State Supervisor, Washington Fish and Wildlife Office, 510 Desmond Drive, Suite 102, Lacey, WA 98503; tel: 360-753-9440. (Federal Register: 5 May 2020 [Proposed Rule] pages 26786-26820).
Apr 23, 2020
USFWS reclassified the golden conure (Gauruba guarouba) under the ESA, from endangered to threatened on the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. The determination is based on a thorough review of the best available scientific and commercial information, which indicates that the golden conure no longer meets the definition of an endangered species, but is likely to become an endangered species within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range. Additionally, this final rule updates the List to reflect the latest scientifically accepted taxonomy and nomenclature for the species as Guaruba guarouba, golden conure. This rule is effective 26 May 2020. POC is Don Morgan, Chief, Branch of Delisting and Foreign Species, Ecological Services, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS: ES, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; tel: 703-358-2444. (Federal Register 23 April 2020 [Rule] pages 22653-22663).
Apr 22, 2020
EPA is amending the emissions reporting regulations applicable to sources that monitor and report emissions under the Acid Rain Program, the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR), and/or the NOX SIP Call. The amendments provide that if an affected unit fails to complete a required quality-assurance, certification or recertification, fuel analysis, or emission rate test by the applicable deadline under the regulations because of travel, plant access, or other safety restrictions implemented to address the current COVID-19 national emergency and if the unit's actual monitored data would be considered valid if not for the delayed test, the unit may temporarily continue to report actual monitored data instead of substitute data. The amendments promulgated in this rule will expire in 180 days. EPA is also requesting comment on this rule. This rule is effective 22 April 2020. EPA will consider comments on this rule received on or before 22 May 2020. POC is David Lifland, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Clean Air Markets Division, Mail Code 6204M, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: 202-343-9151; email: lifland.david@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 22 April 2020 [Rule] pages 22362-22374.)
Apr 21, 2020
EPA and the Army are publishing a final rule defining the scope of waters federally regulated under the Clean Water Act. The Navigable Waters Protection Rule is the second step in a comprehensive, two-step process intended to review and revise the definition of "waters of the United States" consistent with the Executive Order signed on 28 February 2017, "Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the `Waters of the United States' Rule." Once effective, it replaces the rule published on 22 October 2019. This final rule implements the overall objective of the Clean Water Act to restore and maintain the integrity of the nation's waters by maintaining federal authority over those waters that Congress determined should be regulated by the Federal government under its Commerce Clause powers, while adhering to Congress' policy directive to preserve States' primary authority over land and water resources. This final definition increases the predictability and consistency of Clean Water Act programs by clarifying the scope of "waters of the United States" federally regulated under the Act. This rule is effective on 22 June 2020. POC is Michael McDavit, Oceans, Wetlands, and Communities Division, Office of Water (4504-T), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: (202) 566-2465; email: CWAwotus@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 21 April 2020 [Rule] pages 22250-22342).
Apr 16, 2020
USFWS revised the List of Migratory Birds protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA) by both adding and removing species. Reasons for the changes to the list include adding species based on new taxonomy and new evidence of natural occurrence in the United States or U.S. territories, removing species no longer known to occur within the United States or U.S. territories, and changing names to conform to accepted use. The net increase of 67 species (75 added and 8 removed) will bring the total number of species protected by the MBTA to 1,093. USFWS regulate the taking, possession, transportation, sale, purchase, barter, exportation, and importation of migratory birds. This rule is effective 18 May 2020. POC is Eric L. Kershner, Chief of the Branch of Conservation, Permits, and Regulations; Division of Migratory Bird Management; USFWS; MS: MB; 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803; tel: (703) 358-2376. (Federal Register: 16 Apr 2020 [Rule] pages 21282-21305).
Apr 15, 2020
EPA is updating specific data elements within the NPDES eRule, published on 22 October 2015, that apply to regulated MS4s. These changes are necessary given the promulgation of a separate rulemaking after publication of the NPDES eRule that modified the NPDES permit requirements for small MS4s. That rule, referred to as the MS4 General Permit Remand Rule, published on 9 December 2016, made a number of the MS4-related data elements in the NPDES eRule no longer accurate. This final rule updates those data elements to be consistent with the current MS4 regulations, corrects related typographical errors, and makes other selected clarifications at the request of state NPDES permitting programs. This final rule is effective on 15 May 2020. POC is Greg Schaner, Office of Wastewater Management, Water Permits Division (4203M), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: (202) 564-0721; email: schaner.greg@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 15 April 2020 [Rule] pages 20873-20885)
Apr 02, 2020
USFWS is establishing regulations for the subsistence harvest of migratory birds in Alaska for the 2020 season and beyond. These regulations allow for the continuation of customary and traditional subsistence uses of migratory birds in Alaska and prescribe regional information on when and where the harvesting of birds may occur. These regulations were developed under a co-management process involving USFWS, ADFG, and Alaska Native representatives and are subject to public review. Based on any comments received, USFWS may revise this interim rule. This rule is effective 2 April 2020. USFWS will accept comments received or postmarked on or before 13 April 2020. POC is Cheryl A. Graves, USFWS, 1011 E. Tudor Road, Mail Stop 201, Anchorage, AK 99503; (907) 786-3887. [Federal Register: 2 April 2020 [Final Rule] Pages 18455-18459)
Mar 26, 2020
This action finalizes the residual risk and technology review (RTR) conducted for the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Landfills source category regulated under national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP). In addition, we are taking final action to correct and clarify regulatory provisions related to emissions during periods of startup, shutdown, and malfunction (SSM); revise wellhead operational standards and corrective action to improve effectiveness and provide compliance flexibility; reorganize rule text to incorporate provisions from (NSPS) within this subpart; and add requirements for electronic reporting of performance test results. The EPA is also finalizing minor changes to the MSW Landfills NSPS and Emission Guidelines (EG) and Compliance Times for MSW Landfills. Specifically, the EPA is finalizing provisions to the most recent MSW Landfills NSPS and EG by following the corresponding requirements in the MSW Landfills NESHAP. This final rule is effective on 26 March 2020. POC is Andrew Sheppard, Natural Resources Group, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-03), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; tel: (919) 541-4161 and email: Sheppard.Andrew@epa.gov. (Federal Register 26 March 2020 [Rules and Regulations] pages 17244-17282
Mar 11, 2020
The Clean Air Act prohibits knowingly venting or releasing ozone-depleting and substitute refrigerants in the course of maintaining, servicing, repairing, or disposing of appliances or industrial process refrigeration. In 2016, the EPA amended the regulatory refrigerant management requirements and extended requirements that previously applied only to refrigerants containing an ozone-depleting substance to substitute refrigerants that are subject to the venting prohibition (i.e., those that have not been exempted from that prohibition) such as hydrofluorocarbons. Based on changes to the legal interpretation that supported that 2016 rule, this action revises some of those requirements--specifically, the appliance maintenance and leak repair provisions--so they apply only to equipment using refrigerant containing an ozone-depleting substance. This final rule is effective on 10 April 2020. POC is Jeremy Arling by regular mail: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Stratospheric Protection Division (6205T), 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; by tele: (202) 343-9055; or by email: arling.jeremy@epa.gov. (Federal Register: 11 March 2020 [Final Rule] Pages 14150-14171)
Feb 27, 2020
USFWS designated critical habitat for the black pinesnake (Pituophis melanoleucus lodingi) under the ESA. In total, approximately 324,679 acres (131,393 hectares) in Forrest, George, Greene, Harrison, Jones, Marion, Perry, Stone, and Wayne Counties, Mississippi, and in Clarke County, Alabama, fall within the boundaries of the critical habitat designation. The effect of this regulation is to designate critical habitat for the black pinesnake under the Act. This rule becomes effective on 27 March 2020. POC is Stephen Ricks, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Mississippi Fish and Wildlife Office, 6578 Dogwood View Parkway, Jackson, MS; tel: 601-321-1122.(Federal Register; 26 February 2020 [Final Regulations] pages 11238-11270).
USFWS adopted a rule under section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act for the Louisiana pinesnake (Pituophis ruthveni), a reptile that is listed under the statute as threatened. This rule will provide measures to protect the species, which is from Louisiana and Texas. This rule is effective March 30, 2020. POC is Joseph Ranson, Field Supervisor, USFWS, Louisiana Ecological Services Office, tel: 337-291-3113. (Federal Register 27 February 2020 [Rules and Regulations] Pages 11297-11306)
Feb 06, 2020
The EPA is revising its regulations to streamline and clarify processes related to submission and review of title V petitions. This final rule implements changes in three key areas: Method of petition submittal to the agency, required content and format of petitions, and administrative record requirements for permits.This change is anticipated to provide more complete permit records during the EPA's 45-day review period for proposed permits, the 60-day petition window, and the EPA's review of any petition submitted, and thus reduce the likelihood that the Administrator will grant a petition because of an incomplete permit record. The effective date of this final rule is 6 April 2020. POC is Ms. Carrie Wheeler, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards (OAQPS), Air Quality Policy Division, U.S. EPA, Mail Code C504-03, 109 T.W. Alexander Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; by tele: (919) 541-9771; or by email at wheeler.carrie@epa.gov. (Federal Registry 5 February 2020 [Final Rule] Pages 6431-6446)
Jan 03, 2020
USFWS are removing the Hawaiian hawk (Buteo solitarius) from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. USFWS review of the status of this species shows that the rangewide population estimates have been stable for at least 30 years, and that the species is not currently, nor is likely to become again, an endangered species within the foreseeable future in all or a significant portion of its range. This rule is effective February 3, 2020. POC is Katherine Mullett, Acting Field Supervisor, tele: 808-792-9400. Direct all questions or requests for additional information to: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, 300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122, Honolulu, HI 96850. (https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2019-27339)
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Last Updated: January 06, 2017