Comment period extended on proposed Log Fumigation Rule

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Malec Brothers Transport Fumigation Facility wants an air permit to use 140 tons of methyl bromide to fumigate export logs. (Photo: WWAY)

RALEIGH, NC (WWAY) — The Division of Air Quality is extending the public comment period on the proposed air quality rule changes to regulate emissions of methyl bromide at log fumigation operations. Comments will be accepted until August 30.

DAQ proposed regulating methyl bromide by establishing an Acceptable Ambient Level (AAL) because the lack of specific federal or state regulatory measures for the use of this hazardous air pollutant creates a potential public health risk. Neurological and respiratory effects are of greatest concern from exposure to methyl bromide, which is an odorless, colorless gas. The recent increase in businesses interested in using methyl bromide for log fumigation in North Carolina prompted DAQ to take this action.

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The proposed rule establishes emission control requirements for hazardous air pollutants and toxic air pollutants from log fumigation operations. A proposed amendment adds methyl bromide to the toxic air pollutant list with an AAL value of 0.005mg/m3 (milligrams per cubic meter) with a 24-hour averaging time. The Environmental Management Commission is also requesting public comment on a range for the AAL from 0.005 mg/m3 to 0.078 mg/m3.

Comments may be submitted by email to daq.publiccomments@ncdenr.gov with the subject line “Log Fumigation.” Written comments can also be mailed to:

Patrick Knowlson
Division of Air Quality
1641 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1641