December 31, 2012
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8025
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8040
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8010
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8020
98 San Jacinto Boulevard, Suite 1420
Austin, TX 78701-4296
(512) 391-8030

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TCEQ Sends Notifications Requiring Stricter Water Conservation in Brazos River Basin

On December 14, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality sent letters to certain junior water rights permit holders in the Brazos River Basin below Possum Kingdom Lake, informing them that their water diversions could be suspended if they did not take significant action to reduce their water use. The letters were sent to domestic rights holders and municipal water systems and were prompted by worsening drought conditions and the fact that weather forecasts for 2013 include below normal rainfall and above normal temperatures.

TCEQ Issues Revised NSPS Notication Form for Hydraulically Fractured Wells

TCEQ has issued a shortened interactive form for well completion/flowback notifications required by EPA’s New Source Performance Standard Subpart OOOO in 40 CFR §60.5420(a)(2)(i) for hydraulically fractured natural gas wells. The notification form must be submitted no later than two days prior to starting any well completion with hydraulic fracturing or refracturing at a gas well affected facility.

TCEQ Releases Texas Emissions Reduction Plan Biennial Report

TCEQ has released its latest biennial report to the Texas Legislature on the status of the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan. The primary objective of the TERP is "to reduce nitrogen oxides emissions from older heavy-duty, on-road vehicles and non-road equipment by providing grants and rebates for voluntary upgrades and replacements." 

TCEQ Adopts Infrastructure/Transport SIP Revision for 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards ("NAAQS")

On December 5, 2012, TCEQ adopted the Federal Clean Air Act, §110(a)(1) and (2) Infrastructure and Transport State Implementation Plan  Revision for the 2008 Ozone NAAQS.

EPA Proposes Approval of Texas SIP Revisions Regarding Public Participation

EPA has proposed approval of revisions to the Texas State Implementation Plan that would require public participation in the issuance of air quality permits. Texas submitted the public participation provisions in four separate SIP revisions, starting on July 22, 1998. EPA has proposed to find that the SIP revisions are consistent with EPA policies and comply with the Federal Clean Air Act and EPA regulations. 

Upcoming TCEQ Meetings and Events

A Central Texas Environmental Summit, co-sponsored by TCEQ and State Senator Leticia Van de Putte, will be held on January 14, 2012 in Schertz, Texas. With the theme of "Collaboration Along the Corridor," the Summit’s mission is to provide stakeholders the opportunity to work together to develop solutions to environmental challenges. The event will include presentations on topics of interest in central Texas, including developments in the Eagle Ford Shale and the State’s response to the ongoing drought. Attendees will also have an opportunity to visit exhibits and talk to experts from state and local agencies in attendance. Additional information about this event is available at

TCEQ will host an Industrial Emissions Inventory Workshop in Austin on January 15, 2013. At this workshop, TCEQ Emissions Assessment Section staff will provide information on accurate and timely emissions inventory reporting. Additional information about this event, including a draft agenda, is available at 

TCEQ Enforcement Orders

TCEQ announcements for enforcement orders adopted in December can be found on the TCEQ website at  

Recent Texas Rules Updates

For information on recent TCEQ rule developments, please see the TCEQ website at



DEA Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Regarding Disposal of Controlled Substances

On December 21, 2012, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration ("DEA") issued a notice of proposed rulemaking to address the disposal of unused, unwanted, or expired controlled substances by ultimate users.

EPA Issues Revised Enforcement Guidance Regarding Use of the Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser Defense by Tenants and Model Comfort Letters for Lessees with Renewable Energy Developments

In December 2012, the United States Environmental Protection Agency issued revised enforcement guidance regarding the ability of tenants who lease contaminated or formerly contaminated properties to utilize the Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser defense against liability under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act.

EPA Withdraws Health & Safety Study Rule for Cadmium in Consumer Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is withdrawing its controversial final rule, published on December 3, 2012, that would have required manufacturers (including importers) of cadmium or cadmium compounds that have been or are reasonably likely to be incorporated into consumer products to report unpublished health and safety studies under section 8(d) of the Toxic Substances Control Act.

European Commission Releases RoHS Recast Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Guidance Document

In advance of the January 2, 2013 deadline for Member States to implement the RoHS Recast, the European Commission recently released a Frequently Asked Questions guidance document interpreting the revised Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive 2011/65/EU.

EPA Requires Manufacturers and Importers to Submit Studies on Cadmium in Consumer Products

On December 3, 2012, EPA published a final rule requiring manufacturers (including importers) of cadmium or cadmium compounds, including as part of an article, that have been or are reasonably likely to be incorporated into consumer products to report unpublished health and safety studies under Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) section 8(d).

U.S. Postal Service Allows Some Lithium Batteries in Equipment in International Mail

In an earlier than expected reversal of a temporary ban, the United States Postal Service is now allowing outbound international shipment of small quantities of small lithium metal and lithium ion batteries packed in equipment.

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