The Environmental Protection Agency has issued confidential business
information determinations for 10 industries required to report their greenhouse
gas emissions in a final rule to
be published in the Federal Register Aug. 13.
The final rule requires the industries to report data on their greenhouse gas
emissions, throughputs and outputs, and relevant unit and process
characteristics, as well as calculation and calibration test methods. EPA
determined that data on composition of materials used in production, supplier
and vendor information, and process-specific vendor data are confidential and
will not be publicly disclosed.
EPA is not finalizing confidentiality determinations for data elements
classified as inputs into emissions equations as part of the rule.
Industries are required to report their annual greenhouse gas emissions to
EPA as part of the agency's reporting program at 40 C.F.R. Part 98.
EPA made the confidentiality determinations for:
and natural gas systems,
transmission and distribution equipment,
pre-charged with fluorinated greenhouse gases,
sequestration of carbon dioxide,
of electricity transmission and distribution equipment,
waste landfills, and
of carbon dioxide.
The final rule will take effect Sept. 12. However, portions of the final rule
that defer some data element reporting requirements will take effect upon
publication in the Federal Register.
EPA has made a few changes to the reporting requirements since they were
proposed. EPA did not finalize confidentiality determinations for electronics
manufacturers that would disclose recipe-specific data. Additionally, EPA did
not finalize six data elements for equipment pre-charged with fluorinated
greenhouse gases that would reveal the date of import or export.
The agency also said it would conduct a case-by-case review of six data
elements that it had proposed geologic sequestration sites report, such as total
net mass of carbon dioxide received and the volumetric flow through the
facility, to determine if that information should be considered confidential.
Underground injection sites will also not be required to publicly disclose the
quantity of carbon dioxide received.
EPA issued three separate confidentiality determination proposals in January
and February (77 Fed.
Reg. 1434; 77 Fed. Reg.
10,434; 77 Fed. Reg.
11039; 06 DEN A-1, 1/11/12; 34 DEN A-3, 2/22/12; 36 DEN A-1, 2/24/12).
EPA's final rule also defers the requirement for petroleum and natural gas
systems, underground coal mines, and industrial waste landfills to report
certain data elements they use to determine their greenhouse gas emissions. EPA
said the deferral will give it more time to determine whether publicly
disclosing that information could cause competitive harm to the industries.
The final rule defers until March 31, 2015, the requirement for oil and
natural gas companies to report 10 inputs used to calculate their greenhouse gas
emissions. The inputs include the annual amount of carbon dioxide recovered by
acid gas removal units and transferred outside the facility, greenhouse gas
emissions from wellhead gas-liquid separators with oil throughput greater than
or equal to 10 barrels per day, and emissions from wells with oil production
greater than or equal to 10 barrels per day.
The final rule also defers the requirement for industrial waste landfills to
report the methane correction factor used in their greenhouse gas emissions and
for underground coal mines to report the moisture content and gaseous organic
concentration correction factor used in their emissions calculations until March
By Andrew Childers
More information on the greenhouse gas reporting rule is available by
contacting Carole Cook in EPA's Office of Atmospheric Programs at (202)
343-9263 or GHGReportingRule@epa.gov.
More information on the reporting requirements and confidential business
information determinations is available at http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/CBI.html.