48. The final rule on facility expansion created regulatory language in 40 CFR Section 372.23(a) that limits the coverage of electricity generating facilities to those that operate in SIC codes 4911, 4931, and 4939 (now covered in NAICS codes beginning with 2211) and specifically to those ‘facilities that combust coal and/or oil for the purpose of generating power for distribution in commerce.’ Based on this regulatory language, are electricity generating facilities that only use coal and/or oil to test backup generators considered covered facilities for EPCRA section 313 reporting?
No. Use of oil or coal for purposes of testing, (e.g., testing safety equipment at nuclear facilities) would not constitute a use of oil or coal for purposes of generating power for distribution in commerce. However, if a facility intentionally generates excess power during the testing operations for the purpose of distributing it in commerce, the facility would be ‘covered.’ In fact, if the facility is intentionally generating electricity for distribution in commerce, provided that the facility meets the chemical activity and employee thresholds, the facility would be considered ‘covered’ even if only a small amount of fuel oil used.