August 31, 2012
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8025
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8040
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8010
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8020
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8030

For more information about our firm, please visit www.bdlaw.com .

Office Locations:
› Washington, DC
› Maryland
› New York
› New Jersey
› Massachusetts
› Texas
› California

TEXAS DEVELOPMENTS

Fifth Circuit Vacates EPA Disapproval of Texas Flexible Permit Program

On August 13, in a long awaited decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit vacated the EPA’s disapproval of the Texas Flexible Permit Program, holding that the Agency’s decision was based "on demands for language and program features of the EPA’s choosing, without basis in the Clean Air Act or its implementing regulations."

Texas Officials Hail D. C. Circuit Vacation of EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule

With the State of Texas as a leading governmental petitioner in the case, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality commissioners quickly praised the August 21, 2012 decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to vacate the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule ( EME Homer City Generation LP v. EPA , D.C. Cir., No. 1101302, 8/21/12).

EPA Formalizes Rulemaking by Enforcement Approach for Flaring

EPA Headquarters formally announced through an August Enforcement Alert the latest evolution in its longstanding Flaring Enforcement Initiative: flaring efficiency violations.

Sixth Circuit Rejects EPA Single Source "Adjacency" Analysis

On August 7, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued a decision vacating a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Clean Air Act Title V determination that a natural sweetening plant and sour gas production wells located in a 43 square mile area constitute a single stationary source under EPA’s Title V permitting program, remanding the case to EPA for reassessment ( Summit Petroleum Corp. v. EPA , Nos. 09-4348; 10-4572 (6th Cir. Aug. 7, 2012).

Fifth Circuit Denies Challenges To EPA’s Action On Texas SIP Revision Providing Affirmative Defense For Startup, Shutdown, And Maintenance Emissions

In an opinion handed down on July 30, 2012, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit denied petitions for review of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s final rule partially approving and partially disapproving a revision to Texas State Implementation Plan that created an affirmative defense against civil penalties for excess emissions during both planned and unplanned startup, shutdown, and maintenance events.

Texas State Implementation Plan Update

  • Proposed Infrastructure and Transport SIP Revision for the 2008 Ozone NAAQS : On August 22, TCEQ approved proposal of the federal Clean Air Act, Infrastructure and Transport State Implementation Plan Revision for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards.
  • Collin County Attainment Demonstration SIP Revision for the 2008 Lead NAAQS : On August 8, TCEQ adopted the Collin County Attainment Demonstration SIP Revision for the 2008 Lead NAAQS as well as a related Agreed Order with Exide Technologies, which operates a battery recycling plant in Frisco, Texas.

EPA Publishes Oil & Gas NSPS and NESHAP Final Rules

On August 16, the Federal Register published the revised New Source Performance Standards and National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for onshore gas processing plants and various other stages of oil and gas production that were signed by EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson on April 17, 2012.

Dallas City Council Holds Briefing Regarding Hydraulic Fracturing Rules

On August 1, the Dallas City Council held a briefing regarding hydraulic fracturing and natural gas development in the Barnett Shale, which underlies the city.

Court Approves Consent Decree Requiring EPA Action on Plan for Texas Ozone Nonattainment Areas

As reported in our July 2012 issue, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency  recently entered into a consent decree with the Sierra Club in which it agreed to take actions to approve, disapprove, or partially approve various portions of Texas’ State Implementation Plan for the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria and Dallas-Fort Worth eight-hour ozone nonattainment areas.

Texas Environmental Excellence Awards Applications

TCEQ is accepting applications for the 2013 Texas Environmental Excellence Awards. Apply online through October 5, 2012 at  http://www.teea.org/

Upcoming TCEQ Meetings and Events

  • Annual Advanced Air Permitting Seminar and an Oil and Gas Facilities Workshop
  • Annual Water Quality/Storm Water Seminar

TCEQ Enforcement Orders

TCEQ announcements for enforcement orders adopted in August can be found on the TCEQ website at http://www.tceq.texas.gov/news/releases/8-12agendfa8-8 and http://www.tceq.texas.gov/news/releases/8-12Agenda8-22 .

Recent Texas Rules Updates

For information on recent TCEQ rule developments, please see the TCEQ website at http://www.tceq.state.tx.us/rules/whatsnew.html .

NATIONAL DEVELOPMENTS

SEC Approves Final Conflict Minerals Rule

On August 22, 2012, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved (by a 3-2 vote) the final rule on "conflict minerals."

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