Do I Need an Air Permit?

Except as noted below, any source, including a temporary source, which emits or has the potential to emit any air contaminant (defined as particulate matter, dust, fumes, gas, mist, smoke, or vapor, or any combination thereof produced by process other than natural) requires an air permit.

Sources That Do Not Need an Air Permit

The requirement to obtain a permit does not apply to:

  • activities conducted on residential property, unless such activities constitute a Part 70 source under LAC 33:III.507.A.1;
  • the distribution and application of pesticides;
  • mobile sources such as automobiles, trucks, and aircraft;
  • nonroad engines;
  • controlled burning of agricultural by-products in the field or of cotton gin agricultural wastes;
  • controlled burning in connection with timber stand management, or of pastureland or marshland in connection with trapping or livestock production; or
  • facilities with potential emissions less than 5 tons per year (TPY) of any regulated air pollutant as defined by the Federal Clean Air Act, less than 15 TPY of all such defined pollutants combined, and less than the minimum emission rate (MER) for each toxic air pollutant.  See "Act 547" below for more information on this exclusion.

Further, no non-major source (see the definition of “major source” in LAC 33:III.502) is required to obtain a permit solely because it is a regulated source under one or more of the following:

  • 40 CFR 61.145-NESHAP for Asbestos, Standard for Demolition and Renovation;
  • LAC 33:III.5151-Emission Standard for Asbestos;
  • 40 CFR Part 60 Subpart AAA-Standards of Performance for New Residential Wood Heaters; or
  • regulations promulgated in accordance with the federal Clean Air Act under Section 112(r)-Prevention of Accidental Releases.

Small Source Exemptions

If not exempt as described above, a source may still qualify for a small source exemption under LAC 33:III.501.B.4.
The owner or operator of any source which is not a major source may apply for an exemption from permitting requirements provided each of the following criteria is met:

  1. the source emits or has the potential to emit no more than 5 TPY of any regulated pollutant;
  2. the source emits or has the potential to emit less than the MER listed in LAC 33:III.5112, table 51.1, for each Louisiana toxic air pollutant;
  3. no enforceable permit conditions are necessary to ensure compliance with any applicable requirement; and
  4. no public notice is required for any permitting or other activity at the source.

Insignificant Activities

The LDEQ has also developed a list of insignificant activities (by size, type of pollutant, and activity) which are exempt from permitting (LAC 33:III.501.B.5).  Note: In order to claim an activity is exempt pursuant to LAC 33:III.501.B.5.D, see Case By Case Insignificant Activities.

I Don’t Meet Any of the Exemptions Provided, So What’s Next?

Download the air permit application and review the Permits Procedures Manual.  If you are a small business, LDEQ’s Small Business Assistance Program (SBAP) may be able to assist you in preparing a permit application.  If not, Air Permits Division personnel are available to answer any questions you may have. 

Act 547

Senate Bill No. 384 of the 2008 Regular Session was signed by Governor Jindal on June 30, 2008, as Act 547.  The Act, which became effective on August 15, 2008,provides for exemptions from permitting requirements for certain air emissions sources by enacting R.S. 30:2054(B)(2)(b)(ix) to read as follows:

  • (b) Nothing in this law shall be deemed to grant to the secretary any jurisdiction or authority to make any rule, regulation, recommendations, or determination with respect to any of the following:
  • (ix) Permitting regulations, with respect to air quality, requiring authorization to construct or operate any source for which facility-wide potential emissions are less than five tons per year for each of any regulated air pollutant as defined by the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq., less than fifteen tons per year emitted of all such defined pollutants combined, and less than the minimum emission rate for each toxic air pollutant established pursuant to R.S. 30:2060, unless such source is required to obtain a permit pursuant to the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. 7661 et seq.  Notwithstanding the provisions of this Item, the secretary may adopt, promulgate and enforce standards, limitations and other regulations applicable to sources which are not required to obtain a permit.  The standards or regulations shall not include any requirement for approval by the department.  The standards or regulations may include the requirement to determine, document and maintain records to demonstrate the potential or actual emissions of the facility.  For purposes of this Item, "potential emissions" shall mean the emissions the facility is capable of emitting considering all control measures in place, utilized and properly maintained and historical practices, including hours of operation and number of employees at the facility.

If your facility meets the requirements listed above, an air permit is not required.  However, prior to increasing the potential to emit of the facility above the established limits established, you must apply for an air permit or small source exemption (described above), as appropriate, in accordance with LAC 33:III.Chapter 5.

Note for Portable Sources: To determine Act 547 applicability, annual potential to emit shall be based on total expected emissions from all sites.  Emissions shall not be evaluated separately for each site.