If the facility is operating under a Title V permit, the following is required to be submitted to the Air Protection Branch as soon as possible after the transfer of ownership:
Letter signed by new and former owners indicating the effective date of transfer of responsibilities for the facility. Include a statement as to whether or not there will be changes in equipment or processes at the facility.
If there are no equipment or process changes, the Title V application with a minimum of sections A, B and C completed and the notarized certification signed by the Responsible Official. NOTE: only the software based application will be accepted. Sections A, B & C of the application are the "Facility Information," "Facility Emissions" and "Rule Applicability" sections of the application.
If there are equipment or process changes, fully completed Title V AND SIP Construction and Operating permit applications are required to be submitted, accompanied by the notarized certification signed by the Responsible Official. Data may be imported from an electronic Title V application for the facility if one was already completed.
Facilities not operating under a Title V permit:
If the facility is operating under a "regular" SIP permit, a letter signed by new and former owners indicating the effective date of transfer of responsibilities for the facility. Include a statement as to whether or not there will be changes in equipment or processes at the facility. If there are changes to equipment or processes, a fully completed SIP Construction and Operating permit application must be completed and submitted with the letter.
Note: Air quality permits are not transferable in Georgia. New permits are issued in the name of the facility's new owner.
The facility must submit all Title V applications electronically using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS). Complete and submit sections A, B, and any other sections of the application form(s) pertaining to the equipment or processes being modified. A minimum of one Emissions Source will need to be included. If the emissions unit is not being changed just note that in the description.
The facility must submit a Title V application electronically using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS) within one year of beginning operation as a major source. A SIP Construction and Operating permit application should be submitted as soon as possible as processing time varies depending on facility location, size and quantity of air pollutants.
The facility must submit all Title V applications electronically using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS). Detailed instructions on creating and submitting Title V applications in the GEOS system can be found in the guidance documents at http://epd.georgia.gov/geos/getting-started.
The facility has two options: 1) Describe the alternate scenario in a Word document and upload it as an attachment to the Title V application using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS). 2) Create another emission unit record and add a dash A, B, C, etc., (i.e. Boiler B001-A) to indicate the alternate scenario. Discuss the alternate scenario in the description/attachment.
The facility has a couple of options depending on the type of application, but all Title V modifications must be submitted electronically using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS).
For Administrative Permit Condition Changes only, the facility should select “Administrative Permit Condition Changes” as the Application Reason and then “Add New Record[s]” to the table in Section A.1. Alternatively, the facility may specify the permit number in Form A.1 and list all the permit conditions and requested changes in a Word document and upload it as an attachment to the Title V application.
For Initial or Renewal Title V Permit Applications, the facility submits a Title V application using the Georgia EPD Online System (GEOS). The facility can enter the required information in Section A (Project Description) or they can create a Word document listing the permit number, permit conditions, and requested changes and upload it as an attachment to the Title V application. Please clearly label the attachment as “Requested Permit Condition Changes”.
That can be a tricky question. However, if we take it step by step the answer is usually clearly discernable.
Unless Exempt, You Must Get an Air Permit. The Georgia Rules for Air Quality Control require facilities to obtain an Air Permit prior to beginning the construction or modification of any project that may result in air pollution unless that project is exempt from obtaining a permit as specified in the Rules (see Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.03(1), (2), and (6)).
The Rules give the Director some discretionary authority to require permits. Even if the remainder of the regulations state that the activity is exempt from permitting, the rules give the Director of EPD the authority to require a permit if circumstances warrant.
a. See Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.03(6): “Unless otherwise required by the Director, SIP permits shall not be required for the following source activities...”
b. Nevertheless, this discretion is rarely used, so you should proceed as if this discretion will not be utilized.
SIP Permit Exemptions – Gatekeeper Language. The first thing to look at is the general gatekeeper language at the beginning of the SIP Exemption Section in the rulebook (391-3-1-.03(6) Exemptions). That section includes the following language:
a. These exemptions may not be used to avoid any emission limitations or standards of the Rules for Air Quality Control Chapter 391-3-1-.02, lower the potential to emit below “major source” thresholds or to avoid any “applicable requirement” (i.e., NSPS, NESHAP, etc.) as defined in 40 CFR Part 70.2.
b. There are two key purposes to this gatekeeper language. One purpose is to explain that the permit exemptions may not be used to avoid being classified as a major source. For example, if a SIP minor source or SIP synthetic minor source has potential emissions of sulfur dioxide from existing equipment of 95 tons/yr and plans to add additional equipment with potential emissions of 9 tons/yr, the facility must get a permit before it constructs the planned equipment. In this particular example there are two likely permitting options (there may be additional options, however the two discussed options are by far the most likely). If the Permittee is able to accept additional permit restrictions such that the potential to emit for the facility stays below 100 tons/yr including the additional equipment, then the facility can obtain a new/revised synthetic minor permit from EPD. If the Permittee is unable to accept additional permit restrictions for sulfur dioxide emissions, the facility can obtain a SIP major source transitional permit from EPD. This transitional permit will require the Permittee to apply for, and obtain, a Title V permit.
c. The other purpose of this language is to make clear that rule applicability is independent from the permitting exemptions. The permitting exemptions have no effect on the applicability of any Georgia SIP standard in 391-3-1-.02(2), any Federal NSPS standard (adopted by reference in 391-3-1-.02(8)) in 40 CFR 60, or any Federal NESHAP or MACT standard (adopted by reference in 391-3-1-.02(9)) in 40 CFR 61 or 63. Applicability of these standards is governed by the standards themselves. It is possible to be subject to one or more of these rules and still be exempt from permitting. However, the Permittee may elect to include the equipment, and associated applicable requirements, in the permit to help assure that this equipment stays in compliance.
d. While not included in the introductory language for the SIP Permit Exemptions, another issue that the Permittee must consider is whether or not the proposed change would violate an existing permit condition (as discussed later, this issue is specifically addressed by the rules for Title V sources). If the proposed change would violate an existing condition of the permit, the permit must be amended to address the proposed change.
SIP Permit Exemptions – Equipment Specific First, Then Catch-All Emission Thresholds. If a project passes all of the gatekeeper language issues raised above, the next step is to look at the permit exemptions themselves. If a piece of equipment satisfies the criteria for one of the specific permit exemptions, then it is exempt from permitting. Note that some of the specific permit exemptions include size and/or throughput thresholds as part of the exemption (examples include stationary engines, boilers, storage tanks, and concrete plants), while some do not.
a. For equipment not addressed by a specific equipment exemption, there are general, emission threshold based, exemptions. For unpermitted facilities, there are facility-wide emission based thresholds. And for existing permitted facilities undergoing a modification, there are emission based thresholds for “cumulative modifications.” In either case, if a piece of equipment is addressed by a specific equipment permit exemption and it exceeds the applicable size and/or throughput threshold (for example a boiler that is greater than 10 mmBtu/hr heat input), then that equipment must be permitted, regardless of its emissions.
b. Facilities using the “cumulative modifications” exemption must consider a couple of additional factors. First, when comparing the emissions changes to the permitting exemption emission thresholds, facilities may not include any emission reductions. Second, facilities must keep track of all emission increases covered under the “cumulative modifications” exemption. If the emission increases from multiple unpermitted projects ever exceed the applicable emission thresholds, even if spread out over many years, then all of the equipment must be permitted.
SIP Permit Exemptions – Conclusion. If a facility goes through all the criteria described above and concludes that no permit is required, the facility does not have to submit anything to Georgia EPD and Georgia EPD does not need to make a case-specific determination that no permit is required. The rules stand on their own. However, the facility should maintain records to support the determination that no permit is required, including any relevant dates, any change in emissions, pollutants emitted, and any relevant applicable requirements.
a. If a facility is unsure if a permit is required or not, it may submit a request for a determination to Georgia EPD. The request for determination must include all necessary information for Georgia EPD to make the determination.
b. Requests for determination under Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.03(6)(i)3. should be submitted using the NPR form available on the Air Branch 'SIP No Permit Required (NPR) Exemption' web page. Follow the instructions on the web page.
a. Any Part 70 source may make changes that are not addressed or prohibited by the permit, other than those described in paragraph 7., without a Part 70 permit revision, provided the following requirements are met: (i) Each such change shall meet all applicable requirements and shall not violate any existing permit term or condition.
(ii) Sources must provide contemporaneous written notice to the Director and EPA Administrator of each such change, except for changes that qualify as insignificant under the provisions adopted pursuant to 40 CFR 70.5(c). Such written notice shall describe each such change, including the date, any change in emissions, pollutants emitted, and any applicable requirement that would apply as a result of the change.
(iii) The change shall not qualify for the shield under paragraph (10)(d)6.
(iv) The permittee shall keep a record describing changes made at the source that result in emissions of a regulated air pollutant subject to an applicable requirement, but not otherwise regulated under the permit, and the emissions resulting from those changes.
(v) The source shall obtain any permits required under Rules 391-31-.03(1) and (2)
b. The Off-Permit Change language is self-explanatory, therefore this response does not address every single subparagraph. In regard to subparagraph (v), it is worth noting that all of the SIP Permit Exemption criteria described earlier apply to Title V Off-Permit Changes as well. In regard to subparagraph (ii), if the change is exempt from permitting under 391-3-1-.03(6), but is not on the insignificant activities or trivial list, the company must notify both EPD and EPA of the change. Note that the exemptions list in 391-3-1-.03(6) and the insignificant activities list in 391-3-1-.03(10)(g) are very similar. The main (but not only) differences are that "Combustion Equipment" under (6)(b)1, 2, and 3 and the "Cumulative modifications" under (6)(i)3 of the exemptions list are not part of the insignificant activities list.
Some Rules Specifically Require Permitting. Finally, I want to point out that some rules specifically require the facility to obtain a permit. Two notable examples of this requirement are Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(2)(tt) - VOC RACT, and Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(2)(yy) - NOx RACT. Projects subject to these rules, regardless of emissions, must always be permitted, including a draft permit that goes through public notice and comment.
Actual timeframes are affected by factors such as the complexity of the action being requested and the current workload of the permit writer assigned to the application. In addition, it is common for EPD to ask questions during the review process, so prompt and complete responses are helpful at keeping things on track. With those caveats, the Air Branch Permitting Program has the following permitting timeframe goals after receipt of a substantially complete application:
No comments – 6 months
Comments – 9 month
Non-PSD construction permits – 120 days or less. a. 502(b)(10) change to Title V permit – 90 days or less b. Biodiesel and Ethanol production plant permits – 90 days or less
Non-PSD Significant Modifications to Title V permits: a. Construction permit (if needed) – 120 days or less b. Final Part 70 amendment:
Minor Modifications to Title V permits: a. Construction permit (if needed) – 120 days or less b. Final Part 70 amendment: Note that the source may begin operation of the modification under the provisions of rule 391-3-1-.03(10)(e)5(i)(V)I and does not have to wait until the final permit is issued.
Routine changes to existing synthetic minor (SM) or minor (B) sources – 90 days or less
Administrative changes only (name change, ownership change, typos, etc.) – 60 days or less
PSD/112(g) construction permits for major sources or major modifications to existing major sources - 6 months + Significant public or EPA comments may add 60 or more days.