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Home / News / Newsfeed / SCAQMD Adopted Rule Changes – Fall 2023

SCAQMD Adopted Rule Changes – Fall 2023

September 26, 2023
For more details regarding the changes discussed below, go to: http://www.aqmd.gov/home/rules-compliance/rules/recent-actions.

Rule 219: Equipment Not Requiring a Written Permit Pursuant to Reg. II

Rule 219 was amended by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) on April 7, 2023. Rule 219 identifies equipment, processes, or operations that are exempt from permit requirements, as well as criteria for when equipment may be subject to Rule 222, which contains requirements for equipment registration. Amended Rule 219 mostly reformatted and reorganized the existing rule, but it also clarified some ambiguities in the exemption language, added new exemptions, and narrowed others. Recordkeeping requirements were also added to the amended rule.

One of the more substantial clarifications to the amended rule is to permit exemptions related to replacing identical equipment at federal Major Sources or non-Major Sources. Equipment replacements at federal Major Sources cannot be exempted from permit requirements solely on the basis of being identical.

Equipment replacements at federal Major Sources must meet the standards for “routine maintenance, repair, and replacement” pursuant to United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) regulations. For federal Major Sources, the Rule 219 exemption now applies only to routine maintenance, repair, or replacement as defined in federal regulations and based on guidance from the U.S. EPA in determining if an action is a routine maintenance, repair, or replacement.

For non-Major Sources, Rule 219 now references the definition for “identical equipment” so that it is defined as “any equipment which is of the same make and model, and is to be operated by the same operator, and have the same equipment address, and have the same operating conditions and processing material.”

New Rule 219 exemptions include:

  • Gas-insulated equipment with a voltage of 245 kilovolts or less used in electrical power generation, transmission, and distribution operations that uses a volatile organic compound (VOC)-containing gas as an insulating medium and is manufactured to have a maximum leak rate of less than 1% per year under normal operating conditions;
  • Food ovens with a rated maximum heat input capacity of 325,000 British thermal units per hour (Btu/hr) or less that are fired exclusively on natural gas; this exemption does not apply to food ovens used to bake uncooked yeast-containing products;
  • The addition of ultraviolet (UV), electron beam (EB), or light-emitting diode (LED) curing technology, or other curing or drying technology, to an existing permitted coating equipment or operation if certain conditions are met; and
  • Negative air machines and associated high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration systems primarily used to remove asbestos-laden air from isolated work areas at residential or commercial abatement projects where the air is passed through the HEPA filtration system.

The narrowing of exemption language may result in potential exemption loss for two devices. The first is for small, manually operated abrasive blast cabinets and associated dust filters; the exemption now specifies that the equipment must be vented to a dust filter with at least 90% overall control efficiency (capture and collection efficiency). The second is for remote reservoir cleaners; the rule now specifies that the maximum sink opening area must be 7 square feet or less to be exempt.

For equipment that is no longer exempt from permitting, permit applications are required to be submitted within 1 year from the date Rule 219 was amended, unless the SCAQMD issues a written notification to obtain permits before 1 year.

The new recordkeeping requirements in Rule 219 specify that any owner or operator claiming an exemption under any provision of Rule 219 must maintain documentation and/or calculations sufficient to demonstrate that the stated exemption provision, parameter, requirement, or limitation applies. Records are required to be maintained on-site for 3 years and made available to the SCAQMD upon request.


Rule 222: Filing Requirements for Specific Emission Sources Not Requiring a Written Permit Pursuant to Reg. II

Rule 222 was also amended on April 7, 2023, mostly due to the reorganization of amended Rule 219. A clarification was made that requires facilities in the Regional Clean Air Incentives Market (RECLAIM) program to obtain a Rule 222 registration within 6 months of exiting RECLAIM for boilers, steam generators, or process heaters with rated heat inputs from 1.0-2.0 million Btu/hr and that produce less than 1 pound per day of nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions and do not have a Permit to Operate.


Yorke Engineering specializes in air quality consulting and environmental consulting for stationary and mobile sources, including dispersion modeling, health risk assessments, permitting, emission inventories, air quality compliance systems, etc. Yorke Engineering has assisted over 1,800 customers, including a wide variety of industrial facilities and government organizations throughout California. Learn more about how we can help you here: Air Quality | Yorke Engineering, LLC (yorkeengr.com).

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31726 Rancho Viejo Rd. Suite 218
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675

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