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Air Laws and Rules

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Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Air Laws and Rules

The Air Pollution Control Rules have been adopted pursuant to Part 55, Air Pollution Control, of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1994 PA 451, as amended (Act 451). Following are links to Part 55 and other sections of Act 451 which are pertinent to air pollution control (Michigan Legislature source).

Recently finalized and proposed rule changes are on the top of the page. Links for existing rules are located at the bottom of the page.



Recently Finalized Rules

Part 6: Emission Limitations and Prohibitions-Existing Sources of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions

The Part 6 rules were revised and finalized on April 18, 2023 to address ozone nonattainment issues in the state. The finalized rules are effective immediately.

Watch the Recorded Webinar

"Air Quality Part 6 Rule Revisions: What Existing Sources of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) Need to Know"
Recorded February 22, 2023, 9:00 to 11:00 AM EST.


Revisions to Part 6 of the Michigan Air Pollution Control Rules affect existing sources of VOC emissions located in ozone nonattainment areas. With these Part 6 Rule being finalized, there are things some companies should do to be ready. This webinar went over what the expected changes would be, who would be affected, and what a facility can do to prepare.

    • Total of 37 rules impacted (20 revised, 16 new, 1 rescinded)
    • 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard CAA requirement - Section 182(b)(1) - Reasonable Further Progress and Section 182(b)(2) - Reasonably Available Control Technology (RACT) requirement.
    • Ozone Nonattainment Areas: Western portions of Allegan, Berrien, and Muskegon Counties, and Southeast Michigan (Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Saint Clair, Washtenaw, and Wayne Counties).
      Map of the nonattainment areas for the 2015 ozone standard
    • Reasonable Further Progress requirement - demonstration to show a 15% VOC emission reduction from 2017 (base year inventory) to 2023 emission inventory.
    • Reductions gained through the following were used:
      • Revision and creation of Part 6 VOC RACT rules (R602 - R644)
      • Revision/Update to the Consumer Products Rule (R660)
        • Going from the Phase II to Phase IV of the Ozone Transport Commission (OTC) Model Rule (aligns with other Region 5 states progression)
    • Implementation of the Architectural Industrial Maintenance (AIM) coatings rules (R662) - from having no rule to Phase II of the OTC model rules.
    • RACT Requirement
      • A RACT analysis requires implementation of the lowest emission limitation an emission source is capable of meeting by the application of a reasonably available control technology, considering technological and economic feasibility. A RACT analysis must include the latest information when evaluating control technologies. Control technologies evaluated for a RACT analysis can range from work practices to add-on control equipment.
      • Clean Air Act requires states to address RACT for all volatile organic compound (VOC) sources in the nonattainment areas covered by any control technologies guidelines (CTGs) issued by EPA and all other major stationary sources of VOCs that are located in the nonattainment area.
      • Industry must follow the most stringent between the Michigan Rules (i.e., Part 6) and their permit conditions.
      • Note: If your permits do not to align with the new rule revisions, you do not need to apply to get your permit updated. We recognize the benefit of having the permit align with what is in our rules, but updating your permit is not necessary right now.
    • Main Source Categories and associated rule numbers:
      • Surface Coating (R610, R610a, R620, R620a, R621, R621a, R632, R633, R636-R639)
      • Gasoline Marketing (R606-609 & R627)
      • Oil and Natural Gas (R640-644)
      • Printing (R624, R624a, R635)
      • Industrial Cleaning Solvents (R634)
      • Consumer Products and Architectural Industrial Maintenance (AIM) (R660 & R662)
    • Misc. Revisions:
      • R618 cutback asphalt – extended dates for ozone season since it has been extended to March 1 – October 31.
    • When to Comply:
      • March 1, 2023 (see rule 601 for rule specific information)
      • Note:  This implementation date will be very close (and possibly before) the effective date of the rule due to timing issues.
    • Where does this apply?  Geographic Applicability:
    • New exemption limits (generally - please see proposed rules for specific exemptions):
      • 15 pounds per day or 2.7 tons per year.
        • Note: this exemption is primarily featured in the coating rules and replaces the existing 2,000 pounds per month, 10 tons per year exemption most rules previously allowed for (again this is not the case for every rule but a majority – please reference proposed rules for specifics).
    • Updates to Alternative RACT allowed through R602(2):
      • For facilities with unique circumstances/processes where the applicable “RACT” rule is not actually “reasonable” for them – see proposed rule for specifics on alternatives allowed and the steps needed for approval.
        • Note:  this requires facility to make a demonstration for approval by the department and issuance of a permit or order which then needs to be approved into the SIP – lengthy process.
    • Creation of Rule 602(4) – Case-by-case RACT:
      • Required for emission units at a major source facility who are not covered by the RACT rules established in Rules 604 - 644.
    • Using existing Part 2 permitting exemptions with Part 6:
      • Anyone using the Part 2 exemptions from permitting, must also ensure compliance with other parts in the Michigan Air Pollution Control Rules, including, but not limited to Part 6.  All exemptions, permits, and rules must be evaluated independently.  Example:  Small parts washers exempt from permitting under the Rule (2)(h) still need to comply with the applicable parts of Rule 611.
    • Do these new rules require changes to permit requirements?
      • If your permits do not to align with the new rule revisions, you do not need to apply to get your permit updated.  We recognize the benefit of having the permit align with what is in our rules, but updating your permit is not necessary right now.
    • Part 6 rules and the Coating Lines Emitting up to Ten Tons per Year (10 TPY) of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs):
    • These two rules reference model rules created by the Ozone Transport Commission (OTC); a group of Northeastern states required to implement additional rules to address ozone transport given the proximity of member states.  These rules impact products manufactured and sold in Michigan.
      a spray can writing graffiti on a wall
    • The Consumers Products rule has been updated from Phase II to Phase IV Additional consumer products have been added and allowable VOC limits for some products were reduced.
    • General AIM Model Rule Information
      • Michigan has adopted the Phase 2 model rule created in 2011. It sets VOC limits for Architectural, Industrial, and Maintenance coatings.
      • The AIM rule references a model rule created by the Ozone Transport Commission (OTC), a group of Northeastern states required to implement additional rules to address ozone transport given the proximity of member states.
        an open can of paint
    • Who, What, and Why?
      • The model rule sets upper limits for VOC content in coatings, such as house/structure paints, paint used for traffic markings, or industrial maintenance.
      • The rule is applicable statewide.
      • Meant to reduce VOC emissions to help meet ozone standards and requirements of the CAA.
      • Applicable to any person who supplies, sells/offers for sale, uses/solicits the application of, or manufacturers any architectural coating for use within Michigan.
    • Differences from Model Rule
      • Dates are changed from the original rule (since it was written several years ago)
      • A delay in implementation of the rule was provided for small manufacturers and their products to reduce the negative impact for those sources with fewer resources, yet small enough to minimally impact the environmental impact.
    • Major Concepts and Points
      • This is not a VOC or oil-based coating "ban."  It's a reduction of VOCs, not a prohibition.
      • Several states already use this model rule or a similar one. The rule has been around long enough that major manufacturers have either already reformulated or created synonymous compliant coatings for many of their product lines.  Additionally, Michigan's rule features a "carve out" allowing architectural coatings produced by a manufacturer whose total production level is less than one million gallons of coating in each calendar year from 2021 to 2026, to have until January 1, 2027 to comply.
      • A January 1st compliance date was requested by a representative of a trade organization as a convenient date. The rule making process took longer than expected. The rule will not be enforced for a date that precedes its effective date.
      • We have worked with stakeholders (e.g., paint manufacturers and a national trade organization) while creating this rule.
      • Typically, this rule would have been phased in over a longer period, but requirements of the CAA have meant we needed to implement it before the 2023 ozone season.
      • Some manufacturers provide specification data for their coatings on-line that can make compliance determinations simple.
    • Stakeholder workgroups were formed to draft and give input on the proposed rules.
    • Comment Period: September 26 – October 26, 2022
    • Public Hearing: October 26, 2022, 1:00 – 3:00 pm EDT
    • Total Responses Received = 13 submittals (often containing many individual comments) from groups or individuals.
    • Revisions Made Due to Comments = 20
    • AQD staff prepared an informal response to comments document which serves as a supplement to the official JCAR package posted on the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. This response to comment document addresses, at a broad level, topics submitted during the public comment period which did not conclude in further revision to the rules.

Proposed Rule Changes

Proposed changes to the air quality rules have a step-by-step process to go from draft to final. Part of the process includes the opportunity for stakeholders to comment on the proposed rules. Information on any changes being considered is included below. The changes will be opened for public comment once the drafts are complete. The following rule parts are being drafted:

Part 1: General Provisions

Part 7: Emission Limitations and Prohibitions - New Sources of Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Emissions

Part 8: Emission Limitations and Prohibitions - Oxides of Nitrogen (NOx)

Part 9: Emission Limitations and Prohibitions - Miscellaneous

Part 10: Intermittent Testing and Sampling