Comment by Dec 20, 2018 on Ecology’s proposal to close the “SSM Loophole”

Submit your comments by December 20, 2018 to WA Dept of Ecology on their proposed changes to the state’s “Startup-Shutdown-Malfunction” Exemption. The SSM Exemption has been a huge loophole allowing companies like Port Townsend Paper to avoid pollution penalties by attributing excess pollution to “oops” in their operations.

In September 2008, the Sierra Club successfully challenged the exemption at the Federal level (Sierra Club v. EPA, article) as the loophole that it is, and now states are proposing how they intend to close the exemption. This is WA Dept of Ecology’s proposal.

Links in the announcement below tell what they propose and how to submit comments.

Key dates — 

December 12, 2018, 2:30pm – Public hearing, in-person (Lacey WA) and via webinar

December 20, 2018 Comments due. 

WA Dept of Ecology’s Page for the Rulemaking

Announcement —

From: WA Dept of Ecology

Subject line: Rule Proposal Notice – Comment period ends December 20, 2018

The Department of Ecology proposes to amend the following statewide rules:

· Chapter 173-405 WAC – Kraft Pulping Mills,

· Chapter 173-410 WAC – Sulfite Pulping Mills, and

· Chapter 173-415 WAC – Primary Aluminum Plants

The Proposed Rulemaking document (CR-102 form), proposed rule language, Preliminary Regulatory Analyses on the proposed rule, and SEPA Environmental Checklist and Determination of Non-Significance are available on Ecology website:

https://ecology.wa.gov/…/Laws…/Rulemaking/WAC173-405-410-415.

For more information, you can review the rulemaking materials:

· Proposed rulemaking (CR-102 form)

· Proposed rule language:

· Preliminary Regulatory Analyses

· SEPA Environmental Checklist and Determination of Non-Significance

Please review and provide comments on these documents from November 7 through December 20, 2018. Provide suggestions, edits, concerns, or other comments on the proposed rule, Preliminary Regulatory Analyses document, or the SEPA documents.

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