Air Plan Approval; Minnesota; Inver Hills SO2, 4884-4886 [2016-01577]


[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 18 (Thursday, January 28, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 4884-4886]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office []
[FR Doc No: 2016-01577]



40 CFR Part 52

[EPA-R05-OAR-2015-0366; FRL-9941-53-Region 5]

Air Plan Approval; Minnesota; Inver Hills SO2

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Direct final rule.


SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving a 
revision to the Minnesota sulfur dioxide (SO2) State 
Implementation Plan (SIP) for Northern States Power Company's Xcel 
Energy-Inver Hills Generating Plant (Inver Hills), located in Inver 
Grove Heights, Minnesota. The revision, submitted by the Minnesota 
Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) on May 1, 2015, incorporates a more 
stringent limit for the sulfur content of the fuel used at the 
facility, and modifies the fuel analysis requirements to meet the more 
stringent limit. These revisions will not result in an increase in 
SO2 emissions at the facility.

DATES: This rule is effective on March 28, 2016, unless EPA receives 
adverse written comments by February 29, 2016. If EPA receives adverse 
comments, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal of the rule in the 
Federal Register and inform the public that the rule will not take 

ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R05-
OAR-2015-0366 at or via email to For comments submitted at, 
follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, 
comments cannot be edited or removed from For either 
manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its 
public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you 
consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other 
information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia 
submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written 
comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and 
should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will 
generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of 
the primary submission (i.e. on the Web, cloud, or other file sharing 
system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person 
identified in the For Further Information Contact section. For the full 
EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia 
submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Charles Hatten, Environmental 
Engineer, Control Strategies Section, Air Programs Branch (AR-18J), 
Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson Boulevard, 
Chicago, Illinois 60604, (312) 886-6031,

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Throughout this document whenever ``we,'' 
``us,'' or ``our'' is used, we mean EPA. This supplementary information 
section is arranged as follows:

I. What is the background for this action?
II. What changes are being made to the SO2 SIP for Inver 
III. What is EPA's analysis of the state's submission?
IV. What action is EPA taking?
V. Incorporation by Reference
VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

I. What is the background for this action?

    The Inver Hills facility is a 440 Megawatt peak demand electrical 
generation plant. The plant has six generation units, turbines EU 001-
EU 006, which can burn both natural gas and distillate fuel oil. In 
1980, Inver Hills was identified by the state of Minnesota as a 
culpable source in the Pine Bend portion of the Minneapolis-St. Paul 
SO2 nonattainment area in Dakota County. On July 28, 1992, 
MPCA issued an administrative order for Inver Hills to address the 
source's contribution to the nonattainment

[[Page 4885]]

problem. The SIP revision containing the administrative order was 
approved by EPA on September 9, 1994 (59 FR 46553). The area was 
subsequently redesignated to attainment of the SO2 National 
Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) on May 13, 1997 (62 FR 26230), 
and is now a maintenance area for SO2.
    On June 8, 2004 (69 FR 31891), EPA approved a Minnesota 
SO2 SIP revision, replacing the administrative order with 
Title I conditions for the Inver Hills facility. In addition, on 
December 5, 2007 (72 FR 68508), EPA approved a Minnesota SO2 
SIP revision, updating the Title I conditions for the Inver Hills 

II. What changes are being made to the SO2 SIP for Inver 

    On May 1, 2015, MPCA submitted a request to EPA to revise the Title 
I SIP conditions in the SO2 SIP for the six electric 
generating turbines at the Inver Hills facility. The SIP revision 
reduces the allowable sulfur content limit for all fuels delivered to 
the facility from 0.48 percent by weight to 0.005 percent by weight. In 
addition, the SIP revision updates the requirements necessary to 
demonstrate compliance with this more stringent fuel limit.
    The Inver Hills SIP revision contains two methods for determining 
compliance with the sulfur limit for fuel oil. Method A requires Inver 
Hills to sample the fuel upon delivery to demonstrate compliance with 
the new lower fuel sulfur limit of 0.005 percent by weight. Method B 
requires the fuel supplier to provide a guarantee that the fuel oil has 
a sulfur content below a specific limit. If the fuel oil supplier 
provides that guarantee, Inver Hills is not required to conduct any 
additional sampling or analysis of the fuel oil. Since no sampling is 
required, the SIP revision reduces the sulfur content limit under 
Method B from 0.10 percent by weight to 0.0015 percent by weight.

III. What is EPA's analysis of the state's submission?

    The SIP revision submitted by Minnesota imposes more stringent 
limits on the sulfur content of the fuel used at the Inver Hills 
facility. In addition, the provisions for demonstrating compliance have 
been revised to reflect the more stringent fuel limits. A modeling 
analysis was not conducted for the Inver Hills because the SIP revision 
imposes more stringent SO2 emission limits at the facility, 
resulting in a decrease in SO2 emissions. Because the 
revision strengthens the existing SO2 SIP for Inver Hills, 
EPA deems the submittal approvable.

IV. What action is EPA taking?

    EPA is approving the request by Minnesota to revise the Title I SIP 
conditions in Minnesota's SO2 SIP that apply to the Inver 
Hills facility. Specifically, EPA is approving into the SIP only those 
portions of Inver Hills' Title V permit, No. 03700015-004, cited as 
``Title I Condition: State Implementation Plan for SO2.'' 
These Title I SIP conditions replace the current SO2 SIP for 
Inver Hills.
    We are publishing this action without prior proposal because we 
view this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipate no adverse 
comments. However, in the proposed rules section of this Federal 
Register publication, we are publishing a separate document that will 
serve as the proposal to approve the state plan if relevant adverse 
written comments are filed. This rule will be effective March 28, 2016 
without further notice unless we receive relevant adverse written 
comments by February 29, 2016. If we receive such comments, we will 
withdraw this action before the effective date by publishing a 
subsequent document that will withdraw the final action. All public 
comments received will then be addressed in a subsequent final rule 
based on the proposed action. EPA will not institute a second comment 
period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do 
so at this time. If we do not receive any comments, this action will be 
effective March 28, 2016.

V. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes 
incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 
51.5, EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of the Minnesota 
regulations described in the amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth 
below. The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these documents 
generally available electronically through and/or 
in hard copy at the appropriate EPA office (see the ADDRESSES section 
of this preamble for more information).

VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the Clean Air Act (CAA), the Administrator is required to 
approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the CAA 
and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). 
Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state 
choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, 
this action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements 
and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by 
state law. For that reason, this action:
     Is not a ``significant regulatory action'' subject to 
review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 
12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 
     Does not impose an information collection burden under the 
provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);
     Is certified as not having a significant economic impact 
on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
     Does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or 
uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);
     Does not have Federalism implications as specified in 
Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
     Is not an economically significant regulatory action based 
on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 
19885, April 23, 1997);
     Is not a significant regulatory action subject to 
Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
     Is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the 
National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 
note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent 
with the CAA; and
     Does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to 
address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental 
effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under 
Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).
    In addition, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian 
reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has 
demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian 
country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose 
substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as 
specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).
    The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally 
provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating 
the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, 
to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the 
United States. EPA will submit a

[[Page 4886]]

report containing this action and other required information to the 
U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller 
General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the 
Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after 
it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a ``major 
rule'' as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).
    Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review 
of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for 
the appropriate circuit by March 28, 2016. Filing a petition for 
reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect 
the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor 
does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may 
be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or 
action. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are 
encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of 
proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules 
section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate 
petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can 
withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed 
rulemaking. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to 
enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by 
reference, Intergovernmental relations, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Sulfur dioxide.

    Dated: January 13, 2016.
Susan Hedman,
Regional Administrator, Region 5.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:


1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

2. In Sec.  52.1220, the table in paragraph (d) is amended by revising 
the entry for ``Xcel Energy-Inver Hills Generating Plant'' to read as 

Sec.  52.1220  Identification of plan.

* * * * *
    (d) * * *

                                 EPA-Approved Minnesota Source-Specific Permits
          Name of Source             Permit No.    effective date   EPA Approval date           Comments
                                                  * * * * * * *
Xcel Energy-Inver Hills              03700015-004        07/16/14  01/28/16, [Insert    Only conditions cited as
 Generating Plant.                                                  Federal Register     ``Title I condition:
                                                                    citation].           SIP for SO2 NAAQS.''
                                                  * * * * * * *

* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2016-01577 Filed 1-27-16; 8:45 am]