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Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2012 Archive

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Popular Resources

Requirements, policies, and guidance that EPA is proposing. Comments are solicited from the public before EPA issues final versions. Public comment is open for all items on this page. Items for which the comment period has expired are listed on the following archive pages:

Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2011 Archive
Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2010 Archive
Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2009 Archive
Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2008 Archive
Proposed Rules, Policies, and Guidance - 2007 Archive

Note: Pesticide review dockets and registration decision announcements are available by clicking the "Pesticide Dockets Open for Public Comment" link in the Popular Resources box on this page.

Comment Period Open

EPA Proposes Revisions to Pesticide Tolerance Crop Grouping Regulations

EPA is proposing revisions to its pesticide tolerance crop grouping regulations, which allow the establishment of tolerances for multiple, related crops based on data from a representative set of crops. The present revisions would expand existing crop groups for stone fruits and tree nuts by establishing new crop subgroups and/or adding new commodities. EPA expects these revisions to promote greater use of crop groupings for tolerance-setting purposes and, in particular, to assist in making available lower risk pesticides for minor crops, both domestically and in countries that export food to the United States. This is the third in a series of planned crop group updates expected to be proposed over the next several years. Comments must be received on or before January 9, 2012.

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Notice of Availability: Pyrethrins/Pyrethroid Cumulative Risk Assessment

This notice announces the availability of EPA's cumulative risk assessment for the naturally occurring pyrethrins and synthetic pyrethroid pesticides (often collectively called the 'pyrethroids') and opens a public comment period on this document and other supporting documents which are available in the docket. The Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 (FQPA) requires the EPA to consider available information concerning the cumulative effects on human health resulting from exposure to multiple chemicals that have a common mechanism of toxicity when making regulatory decisions. The Agency has identified a common mechanism of toxicity for the naturally occurring pyrethrins and synthetic pyrethroid pesticides, and has conducted a screening-level cumulative risk assessment for all pesticidal uses for the pyrethroids. Based on this assessment, EPA has concluded that the cumulative risks from existing pyrethroid uses are below the Agency's level of concern. Because this cumulative assessment uses a number of very conservative assumptions, EPA is providing an opportunity, through this notice, for interested parties to provide comments and input on any additional information that may be used to further refine the very conservative nature of this cumulative risk assessment. Comments must be received on or before January 9, 2012.

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EPA Proposes Efficacy Data Requirements for Prion Products: Comment Period Opens for Proposed Amendment To Clarify Product Performance Data for Products with Prion-Related Claims and Draft Test Guidelines

EPA is proposing to amend its product performance data requirements to clarify that efficacy data are required for all products with prion-related claims. In addition, EPA is announcing the availability for public review and comment of draft efficacy test guidelines on generating the product performance data for prion-related products. This is a supplement to the January 2011 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to declare a prion (i.e., proteinaceous infectious particle) a “pest” under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), and to amend EPA’s regulations to expressly include prion within the regulatory definition of pest. The intent of issuing the supplemental rule and draft efficacy test guidelines now for public comment is so that they can be issued final at the same time that the prion rule is issued final in late 2012. That way, the final test requirement and efficacy test guidelines can be issued final at simultaneously with the final prion rule that declares a prion to be a pest and amends the current regulations to include prion in the definition of pest. The Federal Register notice announcing these actions provides interested parties 60 days to comment on both the proposed amendment to EPA’s product performance data requirements to add products with prion-related claims and EPA’s draft test guidelines concerning the generation of product performance data for prion-related products. Comments can be submitted at www.regulations.gov in docket number EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0427 until January 17, 2012.

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EPA Co-Proposes Two Options for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) Reporting Rule

EPA co-proposes two options for obtaining basic information from CAFOs to support EPA in meeting its water quality protection responsibilities under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The purpose of this co-proposal is to improve and restore water quality by collecting facility-specific information that would improve EPA's ability to effectively implement the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program and to ensure that CAFOs are complying with the requirements of the CWA. Under one co-proposed option, EPA would use the authority of CWA section 308 to obtain certain identifying information from all CAFOs. Under the other option, EPA could use the authority of CWA section 308 to obtain this information from CAFOs that fall within areas that have been identified as having water quality concerns likely associated with CAFOs (focus watersheds). EPA plans to hold two Webinars in November, 2011 to provide an overview of, and answer questions about, the proposed rule requirements. December 19, 2011 update: The public comment period is being extended for 30 days and will now end on January 19, 2012.

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Amendments to National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Area Source Standards for Prepared Feeds Manufacturing

EPA is proposing to revise certain provisions of the area source national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP) for prepared feeds manufacturing published on January 5, 2010 (final rule). These revisions will clarify the regulatory requirements for this source category and ensure that those requirements are consistent with the record. The revisions address the generally available control technology (GACT) requirements for pelleting processes at large, existing prepared feeds manufacturing facilities, specifically removal of the cyclone 95-percent design efficiency requirement, as well as associated requirements for compliance demonstration, monitoring, reporting, and recordkeeping; clarification of the requirement that doors be kept closed in areas where materials containing chromium and manganese are stored, used, or handled; and clarification of the requirement to install a device at the point of bulk loadout to minimize emissions. These amendments are not expected to result in increased emissions or in the imposition of costs beyond those described in the January 5, 2010, final rule. Written comments must be received by January 23, 2012.

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EPA Proposes Revisions to Existing Underground Storage Tank Requirements and New Requirements for Secondary Containment and Operator Training

EPA is proposing to make certain revisions to the 1988 underground storage tank (UST) technical, financial responsibility, and state program approval regulations. These changes establish federal requirements that are similar to key portions of the Energy Policy Act of 2005; they also update certain 1988 UST regulations. Proposed changes include: Adding secondary containment requirements for new and replaced tanks and piping; adding operator training requirements; adding periodic operation and maintenance requirements for UST systems; removing certain deferrals; adding new release prevention and detection technologies; updating codes of practice; making editorial and technical corrections; and updating state program approval requirements to incorporate these new changes. These changes will likely protect human health and the environment by increasing the number of prevented UST releases and quickly detecting them, if they occur. Comments must be received on or before February 16, 2012.

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Reconsideration of Final Rule and Proposed Rule - National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Area Sources: Industrial, Commercial, and Institutional Boilers

On March 21, 2011, EPA promulgated national emission standards for the control of hazardous air pollutants from two area source categories: industrial boilers, and commercial and institutional boilers. On that same date, the EPA announced that it was convening a proceeding for reconsideration of certain portions of those final emission standards. After promulgation, the Administrator received petitions for reconsideration of certain provisions in the final rule. In this action, EPA is proposing for reconsideration specific elements and accepting public comment on those elements. We are not requesting comment on any other provisions of the final rule. Comments must be received on or before February 21, 2012.

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