EPA Proposes Revisions to Clean Air Act RMP Rules

Posted on 8/31/2022 by Roger Marks

Update 08/31/22

proposed rule to revise the Clean Air Act Risk Management Plan (RMP) requirements for chemical accident prevention and emergency preparedness appeared in the Federal Register on August 31, 2022. 

US EPA will accept public comments until October 31, 2022. Comments can be submitted through the rulemaking portal (Docket No. EPA-HQ-OLEM-2022-0174).

US EPA has proposed a rulemaking to revise the Risk Management Planning (RMP) regulations for facilities that use, store, manufacture, handle, or move regulated substances above certain thresholds.

The RMP regulations, found in 40 CFR Part 68, require facilities to create and submit a plan to prevent accidental releases of regulated substances and minimize the consequences of releases that occur. The proposed rule includes some provisions addressed in previous rulemakings, including accident prevention provisions in a 2017 rule (which were later rescinded).

The proposal also includes new provisions that have not been addressed in prior rulemakings. EPA provided a Fact Sheet about the proposed rule for facilities covered by the RMP regulations.

Proposed revisions for RMP Release Prevention (Subparts C and D) relate to:
  • Addressing natural hazards and power loss in hazard reviews and analyses,
  • Facility siting requirements,
  • Requiring safer technologies and alternatives analysis (STAA) for petroleum & coal products manufacturing and chemical manufacturing processes (NAICS 324 and 325), 
  • Root cause analysis for RMP-reportable accidents,
  • Third-party compliance audits following accidents, and
  • Requiring employee participation and giving employees opportunities to report RMP-reportable accidents or non-compliance issues.
EPA is also proposing to revise the emergency response provisions found in Subpart E of the RMP regulations. Proposed revisions concern informing communities and local responders about RMP accidents, as well as requirements for performing and reporting on emergency response field exercises.

The proposed rule also includes technical clarifications related to updating safety information, retaining hot work permits, and inclusion of recognized and generally accepted good engineering practices (RAGAGEP) in process hazard analyses.

Lastly, EPA plans to further define the phrase “storage incident to transportation” and the retail exemption.

View the proposed rule in the Federal Register

EPA Proposes Revisions to Clean Air Act RMP Rules 

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