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Transportation Conformity Highlights

December 2006

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

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Announcements

FHWA Publishes Interim Guidance on the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. On December 19 FHWA published the CMAQ program interim guidance that became effective on October 31, 2006. FHWA is soliciting public comment on the contents of the Interim Guidance with comments due on February 20, 2007. For more information, see: http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2422/01jan20061800/edocket.access.gpo.gov/2006/06-9679.htm.

New EPA Policy for Review National Ambient Air Quality Standards.On December 7, EPA announced an updated process for reviewing and setting the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). EPA indicates that this new process will improve the efficiency of the NAAQS review process and ensure that the best available science is used in making air quality decisions. The announcement follows a yearlong effort by EPA to determine how the process of reviewing and setting the NAAQS can be improved. EPA's announcement includes a structure for reviewing and setting the NAAQS that includes four components: planning, integrated science assessment, risk/exposure assessment and policy assessment/rulemaking. For more information, see: http://www.epa.gov/ttn/naaqs/.

EPA Proposes First Onboard Diagnostic Systems for New Large Trucks and Buses.On December 13, EPA proposed to require the emissions control systems of large diesel and gasoline highway trucks and buses on 2010 and later model years to be monitored similarly to passenger cars. The proposed regulation for onboard diagnostic (OBD) systems for large trucks and buses would help ensure that emissions control systems work properly for the useful life of heavy-duty on-road vehicles. Comments are due to EPA within 60 days of EPA's federal register notice. For more information, see: http://www.epa.gov/obd/regtech/heavy.htm.

EPA Guidance on Removal of Stage II Vapor Recover in Situations Where Widespread Use of Onboard Refueling Vapor Recovery is Demonstrated. On December 12, EPA issued guidance to its Regional Air Division Directors concerning the removal of Stage II Vapor Recovery systems where States can demonstrate to EPA that widespread use of onboard refueling vapor recovery (ORVR) has occurred in specific portions of the motor vehicle fleet. Under Clean Air Act section 182(b)(3), Stage II vapor recovery systems are required to be used at gasoline dispensing facilities located in serious, severe, and extreme non-attainment areas for ozone. However, under section 202(a)(6) of the CAA, EPA may revise or waive the Stage II requirement after the EPA determines that ORVR is widespread use throughout the motor vehicle fleet. For more information, contact your EPA regional office.

Reminders

Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting - January 21-25, 2007. The Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board will be held in Washington, D.C. on January 21-25, 2007. The Transportation and Air Quality Committee has several sessions planned including an all-day workshop on Sunday, January 21. For more information on specific committee-sponsored sessions, see: http://www.trb.org/am/ip/assembly_search.asp?c=ADC20&comm=Transportation+and+Air+Quality.

Transportation and Air Quality Committee Summer Meeting - July 9-11. 2007.The Transportation Land-Use, Development and Air Quality Conference will be held in Orlando, Florida in July 2007. This conference is co-chaired by several organizations and will be held in conjunction with the summer meeting of the Transportation and Air Quality Committee. For more information, see: http://www.ctre.iastate.edu/educweb/transaq/transaq2007.htm.

Training Opportunities

National Transit Institute Course: Introduction to Transportation Conformity. The NTI course, Introduction to Transportation Conformity has been updated to reflect SAFETEA-LU changes and new information about PM2.5 requirements. The course will be offered January 16-18, 2007 in Las Vegas, NV. These are three of the four course offerings to be scheduled between September 2006 and July 1, 2007. The location of the fourth course offering is in Raleigh, NC, with a specific date yet to be determined. For information see: http://www.ntionline.com/.

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.

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

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

Updated: 07/10/2014
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