Separation Distances of Ammonium Nitrate and Blasting Agents From Explosives or Blasting Agents, 30633-30637 [2015-12990]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 103 / Friday, May 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a ‘‘significant rule’’ under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. Since this is a routine matter that will only affect air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this proposed rule, when promulgated, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The FAA’s authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the U.S. Code. Subtitle 1, Section 106, describes the authority for the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency’s authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would remove controlled airspace at Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport, Springfield, OH. Environmental Review List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71 Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air). The Proposed Amendment Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me, the Federal Aviation Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 71 as follows: 1. The authority citation for 14 CFR part 71 continues to read as follows: Lhorne on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS ■ Authority: 49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g), 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 10854, 24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959–1963 Comp., p. 389. [Amended] 2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR part 71.1 of the FAA Order 7400.9Y, Airspace Designations and VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:18 May 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 * * AGL OH D * * * Springfield, OH [Removed] Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on May 20, 2015. Humberto Melendez, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center. [FR Doc. 2015–12966 Filed 5–28–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–13–P DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives 27 CFR Part 555 [Docket No. ATF 2002R–226P; AG Order No. 3530–2015] RIN 1140–AA27 Separation Distances of Ammonium Nitrate and Blasting Agents From Explosives or Blasting Agents Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), Department of Justice. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking. AGENCY: The Department of Justice proposes amending Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) regulations to remove the reference to an outdated guidance document in an explanatory note following the table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents. The Department also proposes amending that note to clarify that those separation distance requirements apply to all ammonium nitrate. Written comments must be postmarked and electronic comments must be submitted on or before August 27, 2015. Commenters should be aware that the electronic Federal Docket Management system will not accept comments after midnight Eastern Standard Time on the last day of the comment period. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by docket number (ATF 2002R–226P), by any of the following methods— • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Fax: (202) 648–9741. DATES: PART 71—DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS ■ Paragraph 5000 Class D airspace areas extending upward from the surface of the earth. SUMMARY: This proposal will be subject to an environmental analysis in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1E, ‘‘Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures’’ prior to any FAA final regulatory action. § 71.1 Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2014, and effective September 15, 2014 is amended as follows: PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 30633 • Mail: Denise Brown, Room 6N–602, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Enforcement Programs and Services, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, U.S. Department of Justice, 99 New York Avenue NE., Washington, DC, 20226; ATTN: ATF 2002R–226P. Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number for this rulemaking. All comments received will be posted without change to the Federal eRulemaking portal, http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. For detailed instructions on submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking process, see the ‘‘Public Participation’’ heading of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denise Brown, Enforcement Programs and Services, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, U.S. Department of Justice, 99 New York Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20226; telephone: (202) 648–7105. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background Title XI of the Organized Crime Control Act of 1970, Public Law 91–452, added chapter 40 (‘‘Importation, Manufacture, Distribution and Storage of Explosive Materials’’) to title 18 of the United States Code (U.S.C.). One purpose of title XI is to reduce the ‘‘hazard to persons and property arising from misuse and unsafe or insecure storage of explosive materials.’’ Public Law 91–452, sec. 1101, 84 Stat. 922, 952 (1970). The Attorney General is responsible for implementing title XI. See 18 U.S.C. 847. The Attorney General has delegated that responsibility to the Director of the ATF subject to the direction of the Attorney General and the Deputy Attorney General. See 28 CFR 0.130. Regulations in 27 CFR part 555 implement title XI. The regulations at 27 CFR 555.220 set forth a table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents (the § 555.220 Table of Distances) followed by six explanatory notes. In this table, the term ‘‘separation distance’’ means the minimum distance that must be maintained between stores of certain materials, such as high explosives, and blasting agents. The third note states that the distances specified in the § 555.220 Table of Distances ‘‘apply to ammonium nitrate that passes the E:\FR\FM\29MYP1.SGM 29MYP1 30634 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 103 / Friday, May 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules Lhorne on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS insensitivity test prescribed in the definition of ammonium nitrate fertilizer issued by the Fertilizer Institute’’ in its ‘‘Definition and Test Procedures for Ammonium Nitrate Fertilizer.’’ The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) is a voluntary, non-profit trade association that currently has more than 175 members. See Membership List, The Fertilizer Institute, http://www.tfi.org/ about/membership-list (last visited August 19, 2014). Members include importers, wholesalers, retailers, and others involved in the fertilizer industry. Id. Many of TFI’s members handle and store ammonium nitrate fertilizer and may be affected by the regulations at § 555.220. The Agricultural Nitrogen Institute, a predecessor organization of TFI, first developed the ‘‘Definition and Test Procedures for Ammonium Nitrate Fertilizer’’ guidance document. See The Fertilizer Institute, Definition and Test Procedures for Ammonium Nitrate Fertilizer (Aug. 1984), available at https://www.atf.gov/files/publications/ download/hist/definition-and-testprocedures-for-ammonium-nitrate.pdf. In May 1984, TFI assembled a task force of industry and government representatives who were ‘‘experts on the physical and chemical characteristics of ammonium nitrate fertilizer’’ to review and update the document. Id. ‘‘Based on that review and the technical expertise and experience of the task force members, TFI published’’ a revised guidance document in August 1984 (the August 1984 guidance). Id. The August 1984 guidance defines ammonium nitrate fertilizer as ‘‘solid ammonium nitrate containing a minimum of 33.0% nitrogen, having a minimum pH of 4.0 in a 10% aqueous solution, 0.20% maximum carbon, 0.010% maximum elemental sulfur, 0.150% maximum chloride as Cl, or particulated elemental metals sufficient to release 4.60 ml, maximum, of hydrogen from 50.0 gram sample and which will pass the detonation resistance test in Section 2.0 and the burning test in Section 4.0.’’ Id. at 1. A. The Fertilizer Institute Petition On March 19, 2002, TFI filed a petition with ATF requesting that ATF amend the explosives regulations at § 555.220 to remove the reference to the August 1984 guidance. TFI explained that the document is outdated because TFI last published it in 1984, will not review or update it, and cannot ensure that its procedures are still valid. TFI recognized that ATF may require an alternate method of determining the VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:18 May 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 members, trade associations, consumers, and all other interested parties to determine whether a replacement reference for the August 1984 guidance is necessary, and, if so, whether there are any alternate methods available to determine the insensitivity of ammonium nitrate fertilizer. ATF solicited comments on 10 specific questions as well as any relevant information on the subject. The comment period for Notice No. ATF 26A closed on December 15, 2010. insensitivity of ammonium nitrate fertilizer and suggested that ATF reference certain Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations. The DOT regulations include several definitions and two hazardous classifications (Class 5.1 and Class 9) for ammonium nitrate based fertilizers based on the amount of combustible material included in the fertilizer. See 49 CFR 172.101. Class 5.1 ammonium nitrate fertilizer is defined as a uniform mixture with ammonium nitrate as the main ingredient within the following composition limits: (1) Not less than 90 percent ammonium nitrate with not more than 0.2 percent total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon, and with added matter, if any, that is inorganic and inert when in contact with ammonium nitrate; or (2) more than 70 percent but less than 90 percent ammonium nitrate with other inorganic materials, or more than 80 percent but less than 90 percent ammonium nitrate mixed with calcium carbonate or dolomite or mineral calcium sulphate, and not more than 0.4 percent total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon; or (3) ammonium nitratebased fertilizers containing mixtures of ammonium nitrate and ammonium sulphate with more than 45 percent but less than 70 percent ammonium nitrate, and not more than 0.4 percent total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon such that the sum of the percentage of compositions of ammonium nitrate and ammonium sulphate exceeds 70 percent. See 49 CFR 172.101, 172.102(c)(1) code/special provisions 52, 150. Class 9 ammonium nitrate fertilizer is defined as a uniform, ammonium nitrate-based fertilizer mixture containing nitrogen, phosphate, or potash with not more than 70 percent ammonium nitrate and not more than 0.4 percent total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon or with not more than 45 percent ammonium nitrate and unrestricted combustible material. See 49 CFR 172.101, 172.102(c)(1) code/special provision 132. To determine whether a material falls within Class 5, Division 5.1, DOT requires regulated parties to conduct tests in accordance with international standards in the United Nations (UN) Manual of Tests and Criteria. See 49 CFR 173.127(a). ATF received three comments in response to the advanced notice of proposed rulemaking. Two of the commenters are explosive and fertilizer trade associations, and one commenter is an associate member of an explosive and fertilizer trade association. All of the commenters support removing the reference to the August 1984 guidance and adopting DOT regulations for classifying ammonium nitrate fertilizer in accordance with the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria. The first commenter, the Institute of Makers of Explosives (IME), believes that ATF should amend note three following the § 555.220 Table of Distances to be consistent with the source document, Appendix A of IME Safety Library Publication 2,1 and Table 9.4.2.2(b) of the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) NFPA 495: Explosive Materials Code.2 IME noted that these two internationally recognized standards referenced the August 1984 guidance and replaced it with the following: ‘‘The distances in the Table apply to ammonium nitrate and ammonium nitrate based materials that show a ‘negative’ (¥) result in the UN Test Series 2 Gap Test and show a ‘positive’ (+) result in the UN Test Series 1 Gap Test. Ammonium nitrate and ammonium nitrate based materials that are DOT hazard Class 1 sensitive shall be stored at separation distances determined by the American Table of Distances.’’ IME noted that DOT test procedures are ‘‘suitable and internationally recognized at the United Nations’’ and believes that ATF should harmonize its standards with those of DOT. B. Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Based upon TFI’s petition, ATF published in the Federal Register on September 16, 2010, an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (Notice No. ATF 26A, 75 FR 56489). ATF requested information from explosives industry 1 Institute of Makers of Explosives, Safety Library Publication 2: The American Table of Distances 16– 17 (1991), available at http://www.ime.org/ ecommerce/products.php?category_id=13. 2 National Fire Protection Association, NFPA 495: Explosive Materials Code 31 (2010), available at http://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-standards/ document-informationpages?mode=code&code=495. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 II. Analysis of Comments A. Comments Received E:\FR\FM\29MYP1.SGM 29MYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 103 / Friday, May 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules The petitioner, TFI, submitted the second comment. Like IME, TFI noted that IME removed references to the August 1984 guidance from its Safety Library Publication 2, the American Table of Distances, and that the NFPA adopted the same test as IME in NFPA 495. TFI also commented that ATF references NFPA and IME in its Table of Distances. TFI, therefore, supports IME’s position concerning the use of the UN Test Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests. The third commenter, an IME member company, fully supports IME’s comments. Lhorne on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS B. Department Response The Department does not agree that it should replace the current reference to the August 1984 guidance document with a reference to the UN Test Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests. The Department acknowledges that the United Nations has developed criteria, test methods, and procedures that are generally sufficient for competent authorities to use for the classification of dangerous goods during transport. See U. N. Econ. & Soc. Council, Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods: Manual of Tests and Criteria U.N. Doc. ST/SG/AC.10/11/Rev.5 (2009), available at http://www.unece.org/fileadmin/ DAM/trans/danger/publi/manual/Rev5/ English/ST-SG-AC10-11-Rev5-EN.pdf. However, these recommended test methods do not address all the hazards encountered during processes involving dangerous goods, such as storage. Existing literature indicates that fertilizer and technical grade ammonium nitrate prill can detonate under certain circumstances and that various factors—such as particle size, prill density, degree of confinement, temperature, and moisture content—can affect the detonability of ammonium nitrate prill.3 Those factors may develop during transport, handling, and storage, 3 Ronald J. A. Kersten et al., Detonation Characteristics of Ammonium Nitrate Products (2006) (unpublished manuscript) (on file with ATF); Allan King & Alan Bauer, A Critical Review of the EEC Detonability Test (1977) (unpublished manuscript) (on file with ATF); Brian Melof et al., Dep’t of Energy, Sandia Nat’l Labs., SAND2008– 2078, Detonability Study Of Fertilizer Grade ¨ Ammonium Nitrate (2009); Henri-Noel Presles et al., Experimental Study of the Detonation of Technical Grade Ammonium Nitrate, 337 Comptes ´ Rendus Mecanique 755 (2009); Albert C. van der Steen et al., Detonation Velocities of the Non-Ideal Explosive Ammonium Nitrate, 15 Propellants, Explosives, Pyrotechnics 58 (1990); Robert W. Van Dolah et al., U.S. Dep’t of the Interior, Bureau of Mines, Report of Investigation 6903, Further Studies on Sympathetic Detonation (1966); Robert W. Van Dolah et al., U.S. Dep’t of the Interior, Bureau of Mines, Report of Investigation 6746, Sympathetic Detonation of Ammonium Nitrate and Ammonium Nitrate Fuel Oil (1966); C. H. Winning, Detonation Characteristics of Prilled Ammonium Nitrate, 1 Fire Tech. 23 (1965). VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:18 May 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 after the UN test criteria have been applied. In addition, ATF is unaware of any commercially-produced ammonium nitrate manufactured for use with, and stored in the proximity of, explosives that would not fall under the § 555.220 Table of Distances, using the UN Test Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests under the commenters’ proposed amendments. Because the UN tests would lead to all ammonium nitrate being subject to the § 555.220 Table of Distances, the costs of imposing the extra step of those tests would outweigh any benefits. The Department thus proposes amending the third note following the § 555.220 Table of Distances to delete the reference to the August 1984 guidance and to state that all ammonium nitrate stored near high explosives and blasting agents is subject to the § 555.220 Table of Distances. The Department believes this proposal will not negatively affect the explosives industry because most ammonium nitrate currently located near stores of high explosives and blasting agents are already subject to the § 555.220 Table of Distances. Moreover, it is ATF’s understanding that entities who store ammonium nitrate located near high explosives and blasting agents do not use the outdated August 1984 guidance referenced in the existing regulations and instead comply with the § 555.220 Table of Distances for all ammonium nitrate. This proposed removal of the reference to the outdated test does not address ammonium nitrate blends containing fuels. Generally, ammonium nitrate blends are subject to ATF’s criteria for high explosives in § 555.202(a) or blasting agent in § 555.11. Ammonium nitrate blends that meet the criteria are ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures and designated as such in ATF’s List of Explosive Materials, which is published annually pursuant to 27 CFR 555.23. This proposed amendment will provide industry members with clear guidance on the application of these regulations governing the storage of explosive materials. Section 555.206(c)(2) states that all ammonium nitrate is subject to the separation distances requirements in § 555.220. The revision of the reference to the outdated August 1984 guidance in note three following the § 555.220 Table of Distances will make clear the application of the Table of Distances in relationship to all ammonium nitrate. All ammonium nitrate will be subject to the § 555.220 Table of Distances when stored within the sympathetic detonation distances of high explosives and blasting agents. Ammonium nitrate PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 30635 explosive mixtures that are high explosives pursuant to § 555.202(a) or are defined as a blasting agent pursuant to § 555.11, will be subject both to the table of distances for storage of explosive materials in § 555.218 and to the § 555.220 Table of Distances. In this way, the proposed amendment will continue to protect public safety by ensuring that all stores of ammonium nitrate located within the sympathetic detonation distances to high explosives or blasting agents meet minimum distances to inhabited buildings, highways, and passenger railways. III. Proposed Amendments to 27 CFR Part 555 This proposed rule would amend the regulations of ATF governing the separation of distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents. The proposed rule would revise note three following the Table of Distances in 27 CFR 555.220 by removing the reference to the August 1984 guidance. The proposed rule would clarify that all ammonium nitrate is subject to 27 CFR 555.206(c)(2) and 555.220. IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 This proposed rule has been drafted and reviewed in accordance with Executive Order 12866, ‘‘Regulatory Planning and Review,’’ section 1(b), The Principles of Regulation and in accordance with Executive Order 13563, ‘‘Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review,’’ section 1, General Principles of Regulation, and section 6, Retrospective Analyses of Existing Rules. Both Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. The Department has assessed the costs and benefits of this regulation and believes that the regulatory approach selected maximizes net benefits. This proposed rule will not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more, nor will it adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, E:\FR\FM\29MYP1.SGM 29MYP1 30636 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 103 / Friday, May 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal government or communities. Similarly, it does not create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency, materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof, or raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President’s priorities, or the principles set forth in Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, this proposed rule is not a ‘‘significant regulatory action’’ as defined in Executive Order 12866. Section 6 of Executive Order 13563, directs agencies to develop a plan to review existing significant rules that may be ‘‘outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome,’’ and to make appropriate changes where warranted. The Department selected and reviewed this rule under the criteria set forth in its Plan for Retrospective Analysis of Existing Rules, and determined that this proposed rule removes a reference to an outdated guidance document, clarifies the existing regulations, and continues to protect public safety. ATF welcomes public comment on its analysis of the proposed rule’s likely effects. jurisdictions. The Attorney General has reviewed this rule and, by approving it, certifies that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. This proposed rule updates the affected regulations by removing a reference to an outdated guidance document. The changes proposed in this rule are administrative and do not add any new requirements that would have any impact on the economy because: (1) The referenced test in explanatory note three was last published in 1984, is obsolete, and is not used by the explosives industry; and (2) the explosives industry already ensures their stores of ammonium nitrate are stored in accordance with the § 555.220 Table of Distances. ATF will treat all comments as originals and it will not acknowledge receipt of comments. Comments received on or before the closing date will be carefully considered. Comments received after that date will be given the same consideration if it is practical to do so, but assurance of consideration cannot be given except as to comments received on or before the closing date. B. Confidentiality C. Executive Order 12988 This proposed rule meets the applicable standards set forth in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, ‘‘Civil Justice Reform.’’ G. Paperwork Reduction Act This proposed rule does not impose any new reporting or recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act. Comments, whether submitted electronically or in paper format, will be made available for public viewing at ATF, and on the Internet as part of the eRulemaking initiative, and are subject to the Freedom of Information Act. Commenters who do not want their name or other personal identifying information posted on the Internet should submit their comments by mail or facsimile, along with a separate cover sheet that contains their personal identifying information. Both the cover sheet and comment must reference this docket number. Information contained in the cover sheet will not be posted on the Internet. Any personal identifying information that appears within the comment will be posted on the Internet and will not be redacted by ATF. Any material that the commenter considers to be inappropriate for disclosure to the public should not be included in the comment. Any person submitting a comment shall specifically designate that portion (if any) of his comment that contains material that is confidential under law (e.g., trade secrets, processes, etc.). Any portion of a comment that is confidential under law shall be set forth on pages separate from the balance of the comment and shall be prominently marked ‘‘confidential’’ at the top of each page. Confidential information will be included in the rulemaking record but will not be disclosed to the public. Any comments containing material that is not confidential under law may be disclosed to the public. In any event, the name of the person submitting a comment is not exempt from disclosure. D. Regulatory Flexibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)) requires an agency to conduct a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small businesses, small not-for-profit enterprises, and small governmental V. Public Participation C. Submitting Comments A. Comments Sought ATF is requesting additional comments on this proposed rule from all interested persons. ATF is also specifically requesting comments on the clarity of this proposed rule and how it may be made easier to understand. All comments must reference this document docket number (ATF 2002R– 226P), be legible, and include the commenter’s name and mailing address. Comments may be submitted in any of three ways: • Mail: Send written comments to the address listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. Written comments must appear in a minimum 12 point size of type (.17 inches), include the commenter’s mailing address, be signed, and may be of any length. • Fax: Submit comments by fax to (202) 648–9741. Faxed comments must: Lhorne on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS B. Executive Order 13132 This proposed rule will not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the Federal Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 of Executive Order 13132, ‘‘Federalism,’’ the Attorney General has determined that this proposed rule will not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement. VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:18 May 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 E. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 This proposed rule is not a major rule as defined by section 251 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, 5 U.S.C. 804. This proposed rule will not result in an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more; a major increase in costs or prices; or significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with foreignbased enterprises in domestic and export markets. F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 This proposed rule will not result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more in any one year, and it will not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. Therefore, no actions were deemed necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995. PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 E:\FR\FM\29MYP1.SGM 29MYP1 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 103 / Friday, May 29, 2015 / Proposed Rules 30637 [Docket No. USCG–2015–0286] Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. The telephone number is 202– 366–9329. See the ‘‘Public Participation and Request for Comments’’ portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below for further instructions on submitting comments. To avoid duplication, please use only one of these three methods. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this proposed rule, contact Mr. Edward G. LeBlanc, Waterways Management Division at Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England, telephone 401–435–2351, email Edward.G.LeBlanc@uscg.mil. If you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, call Cheryl Collins, Program Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202–366– 9826. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Drafting Information RIN 1625–AA00 Table of Acronyms The author of this document is Denise Brown, Enforcement Programs and Services, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Safety Zone, Fall River Grand Prix, Mt. Hope Bay and Taunton River, Fall River, MA DHS Department of Homeland Security FR Federal Register NPRM Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Coast Guard, DHS. ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking. A. Public Participation and Request for Comments (1) Be legible and appear in a minimum 12 point size of type (.17 inches); (2) Be on 81⁄2″ x 11″ paper; (3) Contain a legible, written signature; and (4) Be no more than five pages long. ATF will not accept faxed comments that exceed five pages. • Federal eRulemaking Portal: To submit comments to ATF via the Federal eRulemaking portal, visit http://www.regulations.gov, and follow the instructions for submitting comments. Disclosure Copies of the petition, this notice, and the comments received will be available for public inspection by appointment during normal business hours at: ATF Reading Room, Room 1E–063, 99 New York Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20226; telephone: (202) 648–7080. List of Subjects in 27 CFR Part 555 Administrative practice and procedure, Authority delegations, Customs duties and inspection, Explosives, Hazardous materials, Imports, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Safety, Security measures, Seizures and forfeitures, Transportation, and Warehouses. Accordingly, for the reasons discussed in the preamble, 27 CFR part 555 is proposed to be amended as follows: PART 555—COMMERCE IN EXPLOSIVES 1. The authority citation for 27 CFR part 555 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 18 U.S.C. 847. 2. In § 555.220, revise paragraph (3) in the notes following the table, to read as follows: ■ Lhorne on DSK2VPTVN1PROD with PROPOSALS § 555.220 Table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents. * * * * (3) These distances apply to all ammonium nitrate with respect to their separation from stores of high explosives and blasting agents. Ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures that are high explosives pursuant to § 555.202(a) or are defined as a blasting VerDate Sep<11>2014 14:18 May 28, 2015 Jkt 235001 Dated: May 21, 2015. Loretta E. Lynch, Attorney General. [FR Doc. 2015–12990 Filed 5–28–15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4410–FY–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 AGENCY: The Coast Guard proposes to establish a temporary safety zone in the navigable waters of Mt. Hope Bay and the Taunton River in the vicinity of Fall River, MA, during the Fall River Grand Prix marine event from August 14–16, 2015. This safety zone is intended to safeguard mariners from the hazards associated with high-speed, highperformance motorboats competing in the event. Vessels will be prohibited from entering into, transiting through, mooring, or anchoring within this safety zone during periods of enforcement unless authorized by the Captain of the Port (COTP), Southeastern New England or the COTP’s designated representative. DATES: Comments and related material must be received by the Coast Guard on or before June 29, 2015. Requests for public meetings must be received by the Coast Guard on or before June 19, 2015. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG– 2015–0286 using any one of the following methods: (1) Federal e-Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. (2) Fax: 202–493–2251. (3) Mail or Delivery: Docket Management Facility (M–30), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590–0001. Deliveries accepted between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., SUMMARY: Authority and Issuance * agent pursuant to § 555.11 are subject to the table of distances for storage of explosive materials in § 555.218 and to the table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents in § 555.220. * * * * * PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4702 Sfmt 4702 We encourage you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting comments and related materials. All comments received will be posted without change to http:// www.regulations.gov and will include any personal information you have provided. 1. Submitting Comments If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this rulemaking (USCG–2015–0286), indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation. You may submit your comments and material online (via http:// www.regulations.gov) or by fax, mail, or hand delivery, but please use only one of these means. If you submit a comment online via http:// www.regulations.gov, it will be considered received by the Coast Guard when you successfully transmit the comment. If you fax, hand deliver, or mail your comment, it will be considered as having been received by the Coast Guard when it is received at the Docket Management Facility. We recommend that you include your name and a mailing address, an email address, or a telephone number in the body of your document so that we can contact you if we have questions regarding your submission. E:\FR\FM\29MYP1.SGM 29MYP1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 103 (Friday, May 29, 2015)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 30633-30637]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-12990]


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DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives

27 CFR Part 555

[Docket No. ATF 2002R-226P; AG Order No. 3530-2015]
RIN 1140-AA27


Separation Distances of Ammonium Nitrate and Blasting Agents From 
Explosives or Blasting Agents

AGENCY: Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), 
Department of Justice.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Justice proposes amending Bureau of Alcohol, 
Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) regulations to remove the 
reference to an outdated guidance document in an explanatory note 
following the table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and 
blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents. The Department also 
proposes amending that note to clarify that those separation distance 
requirements apply to all ammonium nitrate.

DATES: Written comments must be postmarked and electronic comments must 
be submitted on or before August 27, 2015. Commenters should be aware 
that the electronic Federal Docket Management system will not accept 
comments after midnight Eastern Standard Time on the last day of the 
comment period.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by docket number (ATF 
2002R-226P), by any of the following methods--
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Fax: (202) 648-9741.
     Mail: Denise Brown, Room 6N-602, Office of Regulatory 
Affairs, Enforcement Programs and Services, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, 
Firearms, and Explosives, U.S. Department of Justice, 99 New York 
Avenue NE., Washington, DC, 20226; ATTN: ATF 2002R-226P.
    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name 
and docket number for this rulemaking. All comments received will be 
posted without change to the Federal eRulemaking portal, http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. For 
detailed instructions on submitting comments and additional information 
on the rulemaking process, see the ``Public Participation'' heading of 
the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denise Brown, Enforcement Programs and 
Services, Office of Regulatory Affairs, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, 
Firearms, and Explosives, U.S. Department of Justice, 99 New York 
Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20226; telephone: (202) 648-7105.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    Title XI of the Organized Crime Control Act of 1970, Public Law 91-
452, added chapter 40 (``Importation, Manufacture, Distribution and 
Storage of Explosive Materials'') to title 18 of the United States Code 
(U.S.C.). One purpose of title XI is to reduce the ``hazard to persons 
and property arising from misuse and unsafe or insecure storage of 
explosive materials.'' Public Law 91-452, sec. 1101, 84 Stat. 922, 952 
(1970).
    The Attorney General is responsible for implementing title XI. See 
18 U.S.C. 847. The Attorney General has delegated that responsibility 
to the Director of the ATF subject to the direction of the Attorney 
General and the Deputy Attorney General. See 28 CFR 0.130. Regulations 
in 27 CFR part 555 implement title XI.
    The regulations at 27 CFR 555.220 set forth a table of separation 
distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or 
blasting agents (the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances) followed by six 
explanatory notes. In this table, the term ``separation distance'' 
means the minimum distance that must be maintained between stores of 
certain materials, such as high explosives, and blasting agents. The 
third note states that the distances specified in the Sec.  555.220 
Table of Distances ``apply to ammonium nitrate that passes the

[[Page 30634]]

insensitivity test prescribed in the definition of ammonium nitrate 
fertilizer issued by the Fertilizer Institute'' in its ``Definition and 
Test Procedures for Ammonium Nitrate Fertilizer.''
    The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) is a voluntary, non-profit trade 
association that currently has more than 175 members. See Membership 
List, The Fertilizer Institute, http://www.tfi.org/about/membership-list (last visited August 19, 2014). Members include importers, 
wholesalers, retailers, and others involved in the fertilizer industry. 
Id. Many of TFI's members handle and store ammonium nitrate fertilizer 
and may be affected by the regulations at Sec.  555.220.
    The Agricultural Nitrogen Institute, a predecessor organization of 
TFI, first developed the ``Definition and Test Procedures for Ammonium 
Nitrate Fertilizer'' guidance document. See The Fertilizer Institute, 
Definition and Test Procedures for Ammonium Nitrate Fertilizer (Aug. 
1984), available at https://www.atf.gov/files/publications/download/hist/definition-and-test-procedures-for-ammonium-nitrate.pdf. In May 
1984, TFI assembled a task force of industry and government 
representatives who were ``experts on the physical and chemical 
characteristics of ammonium nitrate fertilizer'' to review and update 
the document. Id. ``Based on that review and the technical expertise 
and experience of the task force members, TFI published'' a revised 
guidance document in August 1984 (the August 1984 guidance). Id. The 
August 1984 guidance defines ammonium nitrate fertilizer as ``solid 
ammonium nitrate containing a minimum of 33.0% nitrogen, having a 
minimum pH of 4.0 in a 10% aqueous solution, 0.20% maximum carbon, 
0.010% maximum elemental sulfur, 0.150% maximum chloride as Cl, or 
particulated elemental metals sufficient to release 4.60 ml, maximum, 
of hydrogen from 50.0 gram sample and which will pass the detonation 
resistance test in Section 2.0 and the burning test in Section 4.0.'' 
Id. at 1.

A. The Fertilizer Institute Petition

    On March 19, 2002, TFI filed a petition with ATF requesting that 
ATF amend the explosives regulations at Sec.  555.220 to remove the 
reference to the August 1984 guidance. TFI explained that the document 
is outdated because TFI last published it in 1984, will not review or 
update it, and cannot ensure that its procedures are still valid. TFI 
recognized that ATF may require an alternate method of determining the 
insensitivity of ammonium nitrate fertilizer and suggested that ATF 
reference certain Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations.
    The DOT regulations include several definitions and two hazardous 
classifications (Class 5.1 and Class 9) for ammonium nitrate based 
fertilizers based on the amount of combustible material included in the 
fertilizer. See 49 CFR 172.101. Class 5.1 ammonium nitrate fertilizer 
is defined as a uniform mixture with ammonium nitrate as the main 
ingredient within the following composition limits: (1) Not less than 
90 percent ammonium nitrate with not more than 0.2 percent total 
combustible, organic material calculated as carbon, and with added 
matter, if any, that is inorganic and inert when in contact with 
ammonium nitrate; or (2) more than 70 percent but less than 90 percent 
ammonium nitrate with other inorganic materials, or more than 80 
percent but less than 90 percent ammonium nitrate mixed with calcium 
carbonate or dolomite or mineral calcium sulphate, and not more than 
0.4 percent total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon; 
or (3) ammonium nitrate-based fertilizers containing mixtures of 
ammonium nitrate and ammonium sulphate with more than 45 percent but 
less than 70 percent ammonium nitrate, and not more than 0.4 percent 
total combustible, organic material calculated as carbon such that the 
sum of the percentage of compositions of ammonium nitrate and ammonium 
sulphate exceeds 70 percent. See 49 CFR 172.101, 172.102(c)(1) code/
special provisions 52, 150. Class 9 ammonium nitrate fertilizer is 
defined as a uniform, ammonium nitrate-based fertilizer mixture 
containing nitrogen, phosphate, or potash with not more than 70 percent 
ammonium nitrate and not more than 0.4 percent total combustible, 
organic material calculated as carbon or with not more than 45 percent 
ammonium nitrate and unrestricted combustible material. See 49 CFR 
172.101, 172.102(c)(1) code/special provision 132. To determine whether 
a material falls within Class 5, Division 5.1, DOT requires regulated 
parties to conduct tests in accordance with international standards in 
the United Nations (UN) Manual of Tests and Criteria. See 49 CFR 
173.127(a).

B. Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    Based upon TFI's petition, ATF published in the Federal Register on 
September 16, 2010, an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (Notice 
No. ATF 26A, 75 FR 56489). ATF requested information from explosives 
industry members, trade associations, consumers, and all other 
interested parties to determine whether a replacement reference for the 
August 1984 guidance is necessary, and, if so, whether there are any 
alternate methods available to determine the insensitivity of ammonium 
nitrate fertilizer. ATF solicited comments on 10 specific questions as 
well as any relevant information on the subject. The comment period for 
Notice No. ATF 26A closed on December 15, 2010.

II. Analysis of Comments

A. Comments Received

    ATF received three comments in response to the advanced notice of 
proposed rulemaking. Two of the commenters are explosive and fertilizer 
trade associations, and one commenter is an associate member of an 
explosive and fertilizer trade association. All of the commenters 
support removing the reference to the August 1984 guidance and adopting 
DOT regulations for classifying ammonium nitrate fertilizer in 
accordance with the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria.
    The first commenter, the Institute of Makers of Explosives (IME), 
believes that ATF should amend note three following the Sec.  555.220 
Table of Distances to be consistent with the source document, Appendix 
A of IME Safety Library Publication 2,\1\ and Table 9.4.2.2(b) of the 
National Fire Protection Association's (NFPA) NFPA 495: Explosive 
Materials Code.\2\ IME noted that these two internationally recognized 
standards referenced the August 1984 guidance and replaced it with the 
following: ``The distances in the Table apply to ammonium nitrate and 
ammonium nitrate based materials that show a `negative' (-) result in 
the UN Test Series 2 Gap Test and show a `positive' (+) result in the 
UN Test Series 1 Gap Test. Ammonium nitrate and ammonium nitrate based 
materials that are DOT hazard Class 1 sensitive shall be stored at 
separation distances determined by the American Table of Distances.'' 
IME noted that DOT test procedures are ``suitable and internationally 
recognized at the United Nations'' and believes that ATF should 
harmonize its standards with those of DOT.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Institute of Makers of Explosives, Safety Library 
Publication 2: The American Table of Distances 16-17 (1991), 
available at http://www.ime.org/ecommerce/products.php?category_id=13.
    \2\ National Fire Protection Association, NFPA 495: Explosive 
Materials Code 31 (2010), available at http://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-standards/document-information-pages?mode=code&code=495.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 30635]]

    The petitioner, TFI, submitted the second comment. Like IME, TFI 
noted that IME removed references to the August 1984 guidance from its 
Safety Library Publication 2, the American Table of Distances, and that 
the NFPA adopted the same test as IME in NFPA 495. TFI also commented 
that ATF references NFPA and IME in its Table of Distances. TFI, 
therefore, supports IME's position concerning the use of the UN Test 
Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests.
    The third commenter, an IME member company, fully supports IME's 
comments.

B. Department Response

    The Department does not agree that it should replace the current 
reference to the August 1984 guidance document with a reference to the 
UN Test Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests. The Department acknowledges that the 
United Nations has developed criteria, test methods, and procedures 
that are generally sufficient for competent authorities to use for the 
classification of dangerous goods during transport. See U. N. Econ. & 
Soc. Council, Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods: 
Manual of Tests and Criteria U.N. Doc. ST/SG/AC.10/11/Rev.5 (2009), 
available at http://www.unece.org/fileadmin/DAM/trans/danger/publi/manual/Rev5/English/ST-SG-AC10-11-Rev5-EN.pdf. However, these 
recommended test methods do not address all the hazards encountered 
during processes involving dangerous goods, such as storage. Existing 
literature indicates that fertilizer and technical grade ammonium 
nitrate prill can detonate under certain circumstances and that various 
factors--such as particle size, prill density, degree of confinement, 
temperature, and moisture content--can affect the detonability of 
ammonium nitrate prill.\3\ Those factors may develop during transport, 
handling, and storage, after the UN test criteria have been applied.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ Ronald J. A. Kersten et al., Detonation Characteristics of 
Ammonium Nitrate Products (2006) (unpublished manuscript) (on file 
with ATF); Allan King & Alan Bauer, A Critical Review of the EEC 
Detonability Test (1977) (unpublished manuscript) (on file with 
ATF); Brian Melof et al., Dep't of Energy, Sandia Nat'l Labs., 
SAND2008-2078, Detonability Study Of Fertilizer Grade Ammonium 
Nitrate (2009); Henri-No[euml]l Presles et al., Experimental Study 
of the Detonation of Technical Grade Ammonium Nitrate, 337 Comptes 
Rendus M[eacute]canique 755 (2009); Albert C. van der Steen et al., 
Detonation Velocities of the Non-Ideal Explosive Ammonium Nitrate, 
15 Propellants, Explosives, Pyrotechnics 58 (1990); Robert W. Van 
Dolah et al., U.S. Dep't of the Interior, Bureau of Mines, Report of 
Investigation 6903, Further Studies on Sympathetic Detonation 
(1966); Robert W. Van Dolah et al., U.S. Dep't of the Interior, 
Bureau of Mines, Report of Investigation 6746, Sympathetic 
Detonation of Ammonium Nitrate and Ammonium Nitrate Fuel Oil (1966); 
C. H. Winning, Detonation Characteristics of Prilled Ammonium 
Nitrate, 1 Fire Tech. 23 (1965).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In addition, ATF is unaware of any commercially-produced ammonium 
nitrate manufactured for use with, and stored in the proximity of, 
explosives that would not fall under the Sec.  555.220 Table of 
Distances, using the UN Test Series 1 and 2 Gap Tests under the 
commenters' proposed amendments. Because the UN tests would lead to all 
ammonium nitrate being subject to the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances, 
the costs of imposing the extra step of those tests would outweigh any 
benefits.
    The Department thus proposes amending the third note following the 
Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances to delete the reference to the August 
1984 guidance and to state that all ammonium nitrate stored near high 
explosives and blasting agents is subject to the Sec.  555.220 Table of 
Distances. The Department believes this proposal will not negatively 
affect the explosives industry because most ammonium nitrate currently 
located near stores of high explosives and blasting agents are already 
subject to the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances. Moreover, it is ATF's 
understanding that entities who store ammonium nitrate located near 
high explosives and blasting agents do not use the outdated August 1984 
guidance referenced in the existing regulations and instead comply with 
the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances for all ammonium nitrate. This 
proposed removal of the reference to the outdated test does not address 
ammonium nitrate blends containing fuels. Generally, ammonium nitrate 
blends are subject to ATF's criteria for high explosives in Sec.  
555.202(a) or blasting agent in Sec.  555.11. Ammonium nitrate blends 
that meet the criteria are ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures and 
designated as such in ATF's List of Explosive Materials, which is 
published annually pursuant to 27 CFR 555.23.
    This proposed amendment will provide industry members with clear 
guidance on the application of these regulations governing the storage 
of explosive materials. Section 555.206(c)(2) states that all ammonium 
nitrate is subject to the separation distances requirements in Sec.  
555.220. The revision of the reference to the outdated August 1984 
guidance in note three following the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances 
will make clear the application of the Table of Distances in 
relationship to all ammonium nitrate. All ammonium nitrate will be 
subject to the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances when stored within the 
sympathetic detonation distances of high explosives and blasting 
agents. Ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures that are high explosives 
pursuant to Sec.  555.202(a) or are defined as a blasting agent 
pursuant to Sec.  555.11, will be subject both to the table of 
distances for storage of explosive materials in Sec.  555.218 and to 
the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances. In this way, the proposed 
amendment will continue to protect public safety by ensuring that all 
stores of ammonium nitrate located within the sympathetic detonation 
distances to high explosives or blasting agents meet minimum distances 
to inhabited buildings, highways, and passenger railways.

III. Proposed Amendments to 27 CFR Part 555

    This proposed rule would amend the regulations of ATF governing the 
separation of distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from 
explosives or blasting agents. The proposed rule would revise note 
three following the Table of Distances in 27 CFR 555.220 by removing 
the reference to the August 1984 guidance. The proposed rule would 
clarify that all ammonium nitrate is subject to 27 CFR 555.206(c)(2) 
and 555.220.

IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

A. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    This proposed rule has been drafted and reviewed in accordance with 
Executive Order 12866, ``Regulatory Planning and Review,'' section 
1(b), The Principles of Regulation and in accordance with Executive 
Order 13563, ``Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review,'' section 1, 
General Principles of Regulation, and section 6, Retrospective Analyses 
of Existing Rules.
    Both Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all 
costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive 
Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and 
benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting 
flexibility. The Department has assessed the costs and benefits of this 
regulation and believes that the regulatory approach selected maximizes 
net benefits.
    This proposed rule will not have an annual effect on the economy of 
$100 million or more, nor will it adversely affect in a material way 
the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity,

[[Page 30636]]

competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, 
local, or tribal government or communities. Similarly, it does not 
create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action 
taken or planned by another agency, materially alter the budgetary 
impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the 
rights and obligations of recipients thereof, or raise novel legal or 
policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's 
priorities, or the principles set forth in Executive Order 12866. 
Accordingly, this proposed rule is not a ``significant regulatory 
action'' as defined in Executive Order 12866.
    Section 6 of Executive Order 13563, directs agencies to develop a 
plan to review existing significant rules that may be ``outmoded, 
ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome,'' and to make 
appropriate changes where warranted. The Department selected and 
reviewed this rule under the criteria set forth in its Plan for 
Retrospective Analysis of Existing Rules, and determined that this 
proposed rule removes a reference to an outdated guidance document, 
clarifies the existing regulations, and continues to protect public 
safety. ATF welcomes public comment on its analysis of the proposed 
rule's likely effects.

B. Executive Order 13132

    This proposed rule will not have substantial direct effects on the 
States, on the relationship between the Federal Government and the 
States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the 
various levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 
of Executive Order 13132, ``Federalism,'' the Attorney General has 
determined that this proposed rule will not have sufficient federalism 
implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact 
statement.

C. Executive Order 12988

    This proposed rule meets the applicable standards set forth in 
sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, ``Civil Justice 
Reform.''

D. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)) requires an agency 
to conduct a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to 
notice and comment rulemaking requirements unless the agency certifies 
that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small 
businesses, small not-for-profit enterprises, and small governmental 
jurisdictions. The Attorney General has reviewed this rule and, by 
approving it, certifies that this rule will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. This 
proposed rule updates the affected regulations by removing a reference 
to an outdated guidance document. The changes proposed in this rule are 
administrative and do not add any new requirements that would have any 
impact on the economy because: (1) The referenced test in explanatory 
note three was last published in 1984, is obsolete, and is not used by 
the explosives industry; and (2) the explosives industry already 
ensures their stores of ammonium nitrate are stored in accordance with 
the Sec.  555.220 Table of Distances.

 E. Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996

    This proposed rule is not a major rule as defined by section 251 of 
the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, 5 
U.S.C. 804. This proposed rule will not result in an annual effect on 
the economy of $100 million or more; a major increase in costs or 
prices; or significant adverse effects on competition, employment, 
investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United 
States-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises in 
domestic and export markets.

F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This proposed rule will not result in the expenditure by State, 
local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private 
sector of $100 million or more in any one year, and it will not 
significantly or uniquely affect small governments. Therefore, no 
actions were deemed necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act of 1995.

G. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This proposed rule does not impose any new reporting or 
recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act.

V. Public Participation

A. Comments Sought

    ATF is requesting additional comments on this proposed rule from 
all interested persons. ATF is also specifically requesting comments on 
the clarity of this proposed rule and how it may be made easier to 
understand.
    All comments must reference this document docket number (ATF 2002R-
226P), be legible, and include the commenter's name and mailing 
address. ATF will treat all comments as originals and it will not 
acknowledge receipt of comments.
    Comments received on or before the closing date will be carefully 
considered. Comments received after that date will be given the same 
consideration if it is practical to do so, but assurance of 
consideration cannot be given except as to comments received on or 
before the closing date.

B. Confidentiality

    Comments, whether submitted electronically or in paper format, will 
be made available for public viewing at ATF, and on the Internet as 
part of the eRulemaking initiative, and are subject to the Freedom of 
Information Act. Commenters who do not want their name or other 
personal identifying information posted on the Internet should submit 
their comments by mail or facsimile, along with a separate cover sheet 
that contains their personal identifying information. Both the cover 
sheet and comment must reference this docket number. Information 
contained in the cover sheet will not be posted on the Internet. Any 
personal identifying information that appears within the comment will 
be posted on the Internet and will not be redacted by ATF.
    Any material that the commenter considers to be inappropriate for 
disclosure to the public should not be included in the comment. Any 
person submitting a comment shall specifically designate that portion 
(if any) of his comment that contains material that is confidential 
under law (e.g., trade secrets, processes, etc.). Any portion of a 
comment that is confidential under law shall be set forth on pages 
separate from the balance of the comment and shall be prominently 
marked ``confidential'' at the top of each page. Confidential 
information will be included in the rulemaking record but will not be 
disclosed to the public. Any comments containing material that is not 
confidential under law may be disclosed to the public. In any event, 
the name of the person submitting a comment is not exempt from 
disclosure.

C. Submitting Comments

    Comments may be submitted in any of three ways:
     Mail: Send written comments to the address listed in the 
ADDRESSES section of this document. Written comments must appear in a 
minimum 12 point size of type (.17 inches), include the commenter's 
mailing address, be signed, and may be of any length.
     Fax: Submit comments by fax to (202) 648-9741. Faxed 
comments must:

[[Page 30637]]

    (1) Be legible and appear in a minimum 12 point size of type (.17 
inches);
    (2) Be on 8\1/2\'' x 11'' paper;
    (3) Contain a legible, written signature; and
    (4) Be no more than five pages long. ATF will not accept faxed 
comments that exceed five pages.
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: To submit comments to ATF via 
the Federal eRulemaking portal, visit http://www.regulations.gov, and 
follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Disclosure

    Copies of the petition, this notice, and the comments received will 
be available for public inspection by appointment during normal 
business hours at: ATF Reading Room, Room 1E-063, 99 New York Avenue 
NE., Washington, DC 20226; telephone: (202) 648-7080.

Drafting Information

    The author of this document is Denise Brown, Enforcement Programs 
and Services, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

List of Subjects in 27 CFR Part 555

    Administrative practice and procedure, Authority delegations, 
Customs duties and inspection, Explosives, Hazardous materials, 
Imports, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Safety, 
Security measures, Seizures and forfeitures, Transportation, and 
Warehouses.
Authority and Issuance
    Accordingly, for the reasons discussed in the preamble, 27 CFR part 
555 is proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 555--COMMERCE IN EXPLOSIVES

0
1. The authority citation for 27 CFR part 555 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority:  18 U.S.C. 847.

0
2. In Sec.  555.220, revise paragraph (3) in the notes following the 
table, to read as follows:


Sec.  555.220  Table of separation distances of ammonium nitrate and 
blasting agents from explosives or blasting agents.

* * * * *
    (3) These distances apply to all ammonium nitrate with respect to 
their separation from stores of high explosives and blasting agents. 
Ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures that are high explosives pursuant 
to Sec.  555.202(a) or are defined as a blasting agent pursuant to 
Sec.  555.11 are subject to the table of distances for storage of 
explosive materials in Sec.  555.218 and to the table of separation 
distances of ammonium nitrate and blasting agents from explosives or 
blasting agents in Sec.  555.220.
* * * * *

    Dated: May 21, 2015.
Loretta E. Lynch,
Attorney General.
[FR Doc. 2015-12990 Filed 5-28-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4410-FY-P