Program Template photo identifier

Air Quality Program

PSD Frequently Asked Questions

The purpose of this web site is to help potential PSD permit applicants avoid errors and oversights that might delay permit finalization.

The Air Quality Program is committed to issuing permits that are consistent with the latest laws, regulations, and guidance. At the same time, we work with every willing applicant in an attempt to draft a permit that allows the proposed project to remain feasible. Of course, the applicant makes the final judgment on the project's feasibility. Some applicants withdraw from the PSD process in the belief that their proposed project is not feasible within PSD requirements. However, as of the date of this web site posting, the Air Quality Program has never denied a permit.

The devil is in the details. A lack of understanding of these details can lead to delays in getting a final permit. We hope that the information provided here will help applicants understand how to prepare their applications so that the permit development process goes as quickly and efficiently as possible.

At the risk of over-simplification, PSD permit applications have two analytical elements:

  • a determination of the Best Available Control Technology (BACT) for each PSD-significant pollutant; and
  • a modeling analysis that demonstrates no significant environmental deterioration resulting from the proposed project.

PSD permit development is based on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) regulatory code, 40 CFR 52.21. The New Source Review Workshop Manual, 1990 (United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina) is generally accepted as the basis for permit application development. You can download a copy at In addition, there is a library of guidance intended to interpret the application of the regulatory code. It is beyond the scope of this link to re-publish it. The full compilation of EPA guidance is available from the EPA Region VII data base at

Related Links