Revised Rural Area Flexibility Analysis - 6 NYCRR Part 570
Liquefied Natural Gas
1. Types and Estimated Number of Rural Areas
This rule will apply statewide to all 44 rural counties and 71 additional rural towns.
2. Reporting, Recordkeeping, Other Compliance Requirements, and Need for Professional Services
Professional services will be required by applicants to prepare applications for facility permits, design facility structures, ensure that all aspects of the facility are in compliance with applicable building, fire, and safety requirements, maintain the facility, and eventually close the facility. Reporting and recordkeeping requirements of the regulations are minimal, and include reporting spills at the facility and maintaining documents produced in the normal course of business.
The applicant for a permit is required to offer an emergency response training program for appropriate municipal response personnel. As needed, this training will be held annually and the program must be approved by the New York State Fire Administrator within the Office of Fire Prevention and Control of the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services. Costs of the initial training of firefighters will range from $1,000 to $5,000 per firefighter, depending on the number and the level of experience of the firefighters. Subsequent yearly refresher classes or training costs will range from $200 to $500, depending on the number of participants. These costs include a trainer, room, supplies, etc. Releases (i.e., vapor clouds) are addressed with fire fighting techniques. Shorter training courses use simulations to illustrate the behaviors of LNG and explain how to respond to such releases.
The 2011 New York State Energy Research and Development Authority LNG report (available on New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) web site) estimates that the applicant's cost to complete the application process to apply for and receive a facility permit would be approximately $10,000. Permit application fees would range between $100 and $1,000. In addition DEC is authorized to recover costs from the facility to implement the program. Facilities with more than 70,000 gallons capacity would not be allowed under the revised proposed regulations.
4. Minimizing Adverse Impact
It is DEC's belief that the revised proposed regulations will not cause a significant economic burden, place any additional burdens on rural areas, or increase the universe of regulatory requirements applicable to such rural areas beyond those required by the LNG statute, Environmental Conservation Law Article 23 Title 17. In fact, safe transportation, storage and utilization of LNG throughout the State will most likely result in substantial economic, environmental, and energy benefits for the entire New York State.
5. Rural Area Participation
DEC will continue to provide a statewide outreach program to regulated communities and interested parties, including public and private interests in rural areas. An invitation only Stakeholders Meeting was held on Wednesday, February 27, 2013 at the DEC office in Albany, New York. Persons invited to this meeting represented a broad cross section of industry representatives, public/environmental advocacy groups, utilities, and government personnel. Comments received were considered as the rulemaking documents were revised. DEC also made a presentation regarding the draft regulations at the May 22, 2013 "LNG-CNG-NGV Technical Conference," which was sponsored by the New York State Department of Public Service. The conference was attended by a variety of business representatives from large and small companies.
During the proposed rule making, outreach efforts included electronic mailings to environmental groups, statewide organizations, regulated community, and other interested parties, including those located in rural areas. In October 2013, DEC held public meetings at two locations in the State and a public hearing in Albany. DEC also posted and will continue to post relevant information about the proposed rule making on its website, and DEC will receive public comments on the revisions to the rule for a minimum of 30 days after publication of the Notice of Revised Rule Making.
Subdivision 570.2(h), Public Participation, states: "Any hearings, comments, or participation by federal, State or local government bodies or members of the public, relative to any permit proceedings, will be conducted in accordance with procedures established in Parts 621 and 624 of this Title." This subdivision ensures that any hearings in connection with LNG permit applications will be conducted close to locations where proposed LNG facilities will be sited in the State, including any sited in rural areas.