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Transportation Conformity Highlights

April 2010

Prepared by the Office of Natural and Human Environment Federal Highway Administration

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Announcements and Recent Events

American Lung Association Releases State of the Air Annual Report. The American Lung Association (ALA) released its annual State of the Air report on April 28 which states that 175 million or 56% of Americans live in areas that have dangerous levels of soot and smog. This compares to 186 million people who lived in such areas according to the ALA 2009 report. ALA states that cleaner diesel fuels and engines along with cleaning up coal fired powered plants are to be credited with the improvements. To see the full report, which includes analysis of specific cities and regions, see: http://www.stateoftheair.org/.

EPA Revises MOVES Technical Guidance. On April 7, U.S. EPA posted a revised version of "Technical Guidance on the Use of MOVES 2010 for Emission Inventory Preparation in State Implementation Plans and Transportation Conformity". This guidance replaces the previous version dated December 2009. Two changes correct a mistake in the earlier guidance and other changes relate to a method to adjust the Compliance Factor in Inspection/Maintenance programs. To see the guidance, go to: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/models/moves/420b10023.pdf

AMPO Air Quality Work Group Meets in Dallas-Ft.Worth. The AMPO Air Quality Workgroup met in Dallas-Ft.Worth at the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) on April 8-9, 2010. There were about twenty attendees from large, medium, and smaller MPOs in attendance. FHWA was also represented. The agenda included discussion on the MOVES model, Outreach and communication needs, training needs, discussion of good practices in transportation conformity and other items of interest to the MPOs. The meeting was very successful and you may contact Rich Denbow at AMPO for additional information. rdenbow@ampo.org.

Reminders

2006 PM2.5 Nonattainment Areas Must Demonstrate Conformity by December 14, 2010. EPA published the Transportation Conformity Rule PM2.5 and PM10 Amendments in the Federal Register on March 24, 2010. The rule includes requirements for demonstrating conformity in 2006 PM2.5 areas, updates the baseline year to 2008 for interim tests in 2006 PM2.5 nonattainment and maintenance areas, discusses which budgets should be used in PM10 areas to demonstrate conformity now that the PM10 annual standard has been revoked, and clarifies that federally funded or approved highway and transit projects in PM2.5, PM10 and CO nonattainment and maintenance areas must not delay timely attainment or achievement of other interim milestones. The rule and additional information can be found at: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/stateresources/transconf/conf-regs.htm.

MOVES2010's 24-Month Grace Period for Regional Conformity Analysis Started on March 2, 2010. The Federal Register notice includes EPA's announcement of the approval and availability of MOVES2010 for SIPs and regional emissions analyses in all states except California (http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2010-03-02/pdf/2010-4312.pdf). The notice also starts the two-year transportation conformity grace period that ends on March 2, 2012, after which MOVES2010 is required to be used for new regional emissions analysis for transportation conformity. EPA did not approve the use of MOVES2010 for project-level transportation conformity hot-spot analyses, which will be addressed in a future Federal Register notice. Guidance on implementing MOVES2010 for SIP development and conformity purposes can be found at: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/stateresources/transconf/policy.htm. The MOVES2010 model and supporting materials can be found on the MOVES website: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/models/moves/index.htm.

Upcoming Events

TRB Environment and Energy Research Conference. The 2010 TRB Environment and Energy Research Conference will be held in Raleigh, NC on June 6-9. The event will start with a Research Needs Workshop which is an opportunity for transportation professionals from all sectors to identify research needs on transportation, energy and environmental topics. This will be followed by conference sessions. For more information, see: http://cte.ncsu.edu/CTE/EEConference/index.asp.

Save The Date for Northern Transportation Air Quality Summit (NTAQS). NTAQS 2010 will be held August 24 - 26 at the Cambridge Marriott in Cambridge, Massachusetts. NTAQS, like the Southern Transportation Air Quality Summit (STAQS), is held every two years to discuss regional air quality issues. Topics such as conformity, the CMAQ Program, modeling and analysis associated with conformity and project analysis, revision of air quality standards, climate change, and other issues relating to air quality, the environment and planning are covered. The FHWA and EPA Regions 1, 2, and 3 are co-sponsoring the Summit, along with the Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management and other regional and local organizations. For additional information, contact Kevin Black at 410-962-2177 or Kevin.Black@dot.gov.

Training Opportunities

FHWA Resource Center Training Activities. FHWA's Resource Center Air Quality Technical Services Team is available to offer air quality-related training opportunities and information is available at: http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/resourcecenter/teams/airquality/courses.cfm. For further information, contact: Mike Roberts at 404-562-3928 or at Michael.Roberts@dot.gov.

Contacts

FHWA HQ Transportation Conformity Team:

FHWA Resource Center Air Quality Team:
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/resourcecenter/teams/airquality/index.cfm.

If you have any suggestions for future monthly conformity highlights, please email: ssiwek@aol.com.

Updated: 05/31/2012
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