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Pollution Permitting Authority Proposed for Utes

WASHINGTON (CN) - The Southern Ute Indian Tribe would be allowed to issue Title V Operating Permits to stationary sources of air pollution on its reservation under a proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Title V Operating Permits mandate the specific pollution controls required of each applicant under the act.

Under the Clean Air Act tribes can opt out of state administered operating permit regimes if they can show that they have the ability to properly administer a Title V permit program.

The state of Colorado, where the Southern Ute reservation is located, objected to the tribe's application to issue its own permits arguing that only states have jurisdiction to regulate pollution from sources operated on sites leased by non-tribal entities.

The agency said that the tribe has demonstrated that it can meet all the statutory and regulatory requirements to take over permitting for all sources on the reservation.

The agency is seeking public comment on the proposed permitting authority before granting final approval.

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