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Air Quality in Indiana

Air Quality in Indiana > Permits > Air Permits Frequently Asked Questions Air Permits Frequently Asked Questions

1) Who may need to apply for an air permit?

The owner or operator of a stationary or portable source of emissions of regulated air pollutants, including nitrogen oxides, particulate matter with a diameter less than 100 microns, sulfur oxides and other sulfur compounds, volatile organic compounds, nitrogen oxides, and hazardous air pollutants (air toxics). A complete list of hazardous air pollutants is available on the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) Web site.

2) Where can I find the Indiana state regulations for air permitting?

IDEM's Rules Web page provides links to all Indiana regulations. Air regulations are contained in Title 326 of the Indiana Administrative Code (IAC). Download word perfect and PDF versions of air regulations.

3) How will I know what level of permit my new source qualifies for?

In most cases, the level of the air permit depends on the source's total potential to emit (PTE) of regulated air pollutants in tons per year and not on the type of operation or the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Code of the source. Based on the equipment capacity and other factors, the Office of Air Quality (OAQ) will estimate the PTE for your entire source, and then determine the level of your permit. To apply for any air permit, complete the relevant air permit application forms located on the IDEM Web site.

Small sources (sources with low PTE) that are part of a few specific source categories may be eligible for a specialized permit such as the Source Specific Operating Agreement (SSOA) or the Asphalt Plant General FESOP.

Existing sources with records of actual emissions for the past twelve (12) consecutive months may apply for Permit by Rule, 326 IAC 2-10 or 326 IAC 2-11, and limit emissions to less than twenty percent (20%) of any major source threshold.

4) I have an emission unit that I am only going to use for a few months in a year. What would the appropriate level of permit be?

In general, the level of the air permit is based on the source's total potential to emit which assumes operation at full capacity for 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you estimate that your actual emissions and/or production rate are going to be much lower, you may qualify for a lower level of permit such as a Source Specific Operating Agreement (SSOA) or a Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit (FESOP).

5) What is a Permit-By-Rule?

If a major source's actual emissions are equal to or less than 20% of major source thresholds, the source may qualify for a Permit by Rule (PBR). If the potential to emit of any pollutant is above the exemption level threshold, complete and submit an air permit application prior to construction.

6) How do I know if my emission source is exempt from permitting requirements?

An emission source is exempt from air permitting requirements if all of the emission units at the facility are exempt, as listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-3 , and the total potential to emit of all the emission units are below the thresholds listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-3.

7) I think my source is exempt. What do I need to do?

An emission source is exempt from air permitting requirements if all of the emission units at the facility are exempt, as listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-3 , and the total potential to emit of all the emission units are below the thresholds listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-3. Sources are not required to apply for an exemption; however, for a one-time fee of $100.00, you may apply for a letter of exemption, which will confirm your source's exempt status by completing and submitting the relevant air permit application forms located on the IDEM Web site.

8) When may I construct or operate a new plant or make changes to an existing plant?

In most cases, unless the new operation or the modifications to an existing operation qualify for an exemption under 326 IAC 2-1.1-3 , you will need to wait for the air permit to be issued in order to construct and/or operate. Some exceptions to this are:

  • You have a valid air operating permit and the modification to your existing source qualifies for an administrative amendment or notice only change under 326 IAC 2-6.1 , 326 IAC 2-7 , or 326 IAC 2-8.
  • You have a valid Source Specific Operating Agreement (SSOA), and after the modifications, your existing source is still going to qualify for the same SSOA.

Additionally, sources subject to a National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) under Part 63 of Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) may need to obtain pre-construction approval before making a change that would be allowed under the federal standard. More information about Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) preconstruction approval is available on the IDEM Web site.

9) What is a valid air operating permit?

If you have a Title V (Part 70) permit, a FESOP (Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit), an MSOP (Minor Source Operating Permit), a SSOA (Source Specific Operating Agreement), or a Registration that has not expired, that permit qualifies as a valid air operating permit. If you have submitted a renewal application 9 months before the expiration date (for Title Vs/FESOPs) or 90 days before the expiration date (for MSOPs), you have a valid air operating permit. SSOAs and registrations do not expire.

10) Do I need a permit to construct and/or operate even though I have a new minor source?

All new sources, unless they qualify for an exemption under 326 IAC 2-1.1-3 , need air permits prior to construction and operation. To apply for any air permit, complete the relevant air permit application forms located on the IDEM Web site.

11) I have an air permit that is going to expire next year. When is the deadline for submitting the application for a renewal?

For a Part 70 (Title V) permit or a Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit (FESOP), send in the application 9 months before the expiration date. For a Minor Source Operating Permit (MSOP), send in the application 90 days before the expiration date. More information about air permit renewals is available on the Air Permit Renewal Web site.

12) I am planning to make additions/changes to my current operation. What do I need to do?

Unless the changes or modifications are by themselves exempt under 326 IAC 2-1.1-3 , you may need to apply for a source and/or permit modification. In some instances, you may qualify for an administrative amendment or notice-only change. If you have an MSOP review 326 IAC 2-6.1 , for FESOPs review 326 IAC 2-8 , for Title V review 326 IAC 2-7 . To apply for any air permit, complete the relevant air permit application forms located on the IDEM Web site.

13) I currently have a Minor Source Operating Permit (MSOP). I am planning to make additions to my facility, but I do not want it to become a major source. What are my options?

You can take a limit on your production and/or emissions which will let your facility qualify for a Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit (FESOP). To apply for any air permit, complete the relevant air permit application forms located on the IDEM Web site.

14) Where can I find air permit application forms?

A complete list of air permit application forms is located on the IDEM Web site. You can download the application forms in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF. Contact the Permit Reviewer of the Day at (317) 233-0178 or contact IDEM directly at "info at @idem.IN.gov" if you have additional questions.

15) I have a specific question about my air permit and/or my facility. Who can I talk to?

Contact the permit reviewer for your air permit. If you are unable to contact your permit reviewer, please call the Permit Reviewer of the Day at (317) 233-0178 or contact IDEM directly at "info at idem.IN.gov".

16) How do I know which forms to fill out?

Most applicants will need to fill out the general application forms referred to as the "GSD" forms; however, there is a special application for theSource Specific Operating Agreement (SSOA)(click on Source Specific Operating Agreement (SSOA) Application Forms under Additional Forms and Information). At a minimum, all applicants need to complete the application forms checklist, the application cover sheet, and the GSD-01. Applicants need to complete the remaining GSD forms if the project would change anything covered by that form. For example, a new source would need to complete nearly every GSD form since IDEM has no information about the facility, but for a modification, it's only necessary to provide information on the process being changed. In addition to the GSD forms, the applicant must complete the applicable process specific forms ("PI" forms) that are relevant to each emission source.

There are also specific application forms that must be completed for new or modified Part 70 (Title V) sources.

17) I submitted an application for an air permit/permit/renewal/permit modification recently. What is the status of my application and who has it been assigned to?

Contact the Permit Reviewer of the Day at (317) 233-0178 or contact IDEM directly at "info at idem.IN.gov" to inquire about the status of your application.

18) How long will it take for a permit to be issued?

The maximum processing times for the various permit level approvals are as listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-8 . The real time for processing may vary, depending on the completeness of the application packet and the complexity of the operation. The permit time clock may be longer than the real time processing time if the application is technically or administratively incomplete or if the nature of the project changes significantly after submission of the application. Once an application is received, it is assigned to a permit reviewer. If you have any questions or concerns about the timing of the permit issuance, please contact your permit reviewer. You can find out who your permit reviewer is by calling the Permit Reviewer of the Day at 1-317-233-0178 or contact IDEM directly at "info at idem.IN.gov".

19) How much will my permit modification or amendment cost?

The filing and permit fees for permit activities are listed in 326 IAC 2-1.1-7 . If an activity is not listed, then there is no associated filing or permit fee.

Please note that on December 6, 2006 the Air Pollution Control Board (Board) affirmed a decision by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) Commissioner to raise air program fees by 25%. Prior to making any fee adjustments to the air program, the Commissioner prepared a report demonstrating the revenue shortfall and need for additional resources to implement the program. The report was presented to the Board on September 27, 2006, and was available to the public for comment more than 60 days in advance of the December Board meeting at which the fee increase was affirmed. Increases to the annual fees will be reflected on your 2007 annual fee invoice. Increases to the permit fees will be reflected on individual invoices for permits. For a list of fees, please see the air permit guide.

20) The name of my facility changed. What do I need to do?

A name change with no other associated changes can be processed through an administrative amendment which does not carry any fee. Send a letter and the application application cover sheet and GSD-01 notifying us of the name change to:

Indiana Department of Environmental Management
Air Permits Administration
ATTN: Incoming Application
100 North Senate Avenue MC 61-53, IGCN 1003
Indianapolis, IN 46204-2251

21) Which sources qualify for a FESOP (Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit)?

An emission source which qualifies as a major source under Part 70 rules and hence needs a Title V permit may voluntarily accept federally enforceable limits on air pollutant emissions to obtain a FESOP rather than the Title V permit.

22) What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a FESOP instead of a Part 70 (Title V) permit?

In general, a FESOP has fewer permit requirements, has lower annual fees, takes less time to process, and is less likely to be subject to requirements under federal New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) and National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP).

The disadvantages are:

  • The Permittee is subject to limits on actual emissions and record keeping and reporting in order to demonstrate compliance with those limits; and
  • Minor and significant modifications to a Part 70 permit (except for those that involve source modifications) do not have an application fee, whereas, minor and significant revisions to a FESOP (even those that do not involve significant source modifications) are subject to a permit fee ranging from $500 to $3500.

23) What is the life of an air permit? When should I apply for a renewal?

Each Part 70 (Title V ) permit, initial FESOP, and initial MSOP, expires after 5 years. FESOP renewals and MSOP renewals can have 10 year terms. SSOAs and registrations are valid for the life of the source and do not require renewal.

For a Part 70 (Title V) permit or a Federally Enforceable State Operating Permit (FESOP), send in the application 9 months before the expiration date. For a Minor Source Operating Permit (MSOP), send in the application 90 days before the expiration date.

More information about air permit renewals is available on the Air Permit Renewal Web site.

24) How do I know what reports I need to submit?

You may need to submit annual reports, quarterly reports, and/or other reports and certifications. Please review the entire permit, with particular attention to subsections titled "Record Keeping and Reporting", and also look for customized Report Forms that are located in the last pages of your permit.

25) When and where do I submit these reports?

Usually, these reports are to be submitted to:

Indiana Department of Environmental Management
Office of Air Quality - Compliance Branch
100 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Sometimes you are also required to send a copy to U.S. EPA, a local agency, or to a regional office of IDEM. NESHAP Initial Notifications should always be submitted to the Compliance Branch.

26) Do I need to fill out a Compliance Assurance Monitoring (CAM) form?

Major sources that require a Part 70 (Title V) permit are subject to CAM . For each emission unit and pollutant for which CAM is required by 40 CFR 64, submit the CAM form with the air permit application.

27) Do I need to submit an Annual Compliance Certification?

An Annual Compliance Certification form should be submitted to satisfy the annual certification requirements for Part 70 (Title V) sources under 326 IAC 2-7-6(5) and FESOP sources under 326 IAC 2-8-5(a)(1)(C). You are required to attach a signed certification from the permit to complete the annual compliance certification.

28) How often do I need to submit an Emission Statement?

For sources located in Lake and Porter Counties, you are required to submit an emission statement:

  • If your source has actual emissions of 25 tons or more of NOx or VOC (for that year only).
  • Once every year if your source is a Title V source and is permitted to emit more than 2,500 tons per year of CO, NOx, or SO2, or 250 tons per year of PM-10.
  • Once every three years if your source is a Title V source and is permitted to emit less than 2,500 tons per year of CO, NOx, or SO2, or 250 tons per year of PM-10.

For all other sources, you are required to submit an emission statement:

  • Once every year if your source is a Title V source and is permitted to emit more than 2,500 tons per year of CO, NOx, or SO2, or 250 tons per year of PM-10.
  • Once every three years if your source is a Title V source and is permitted to emit less than 2,500 tons per year of CO, NOx, or SO2, or 250 tons per year of PM-10.

29) I have a permit for a facility or process that has shut down. What do I need to do?

Send a signed letter to us at the following address, and include the source ID, the latest air permit number, location of the facility, and date when the facility or process was shut down.

Indiana Department of Environmental Management
Office of Air Quality - Permits Branch
100 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis , IN 46204

A revocation will be issued for facilities that have completely shut down. Sources may apply to have the reductions from these activities included in IDEM's voluntary air emission credit registry. Additional information about the registry is available on the IDEM Web site.

30) I am the owner/operator of a source that may become subject to a new MACT standard. Where can I find information about this?

Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) is required by Section 112(d) of the Clean Air Act. MACT requirements are codified in 40 CFR Part 63, National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). All of the latest information about Section 112(d) NESHAPs are located on U.S. EPA's Air Toxics Web site.