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Air Quality

Regulation and SIP Management

Proposed & Recent Rulemaking

This table lists regulations that the Bureau of Air Quality is currently proposing and regulations that became effective in the last year.

Rulemaking Process

Notice of Drafting

30-day Comment
Initial Board
Notice of

30-day Comment
Period, Staff-
Led Information
Forum, then
Public Hearing
Final Board
Notice of Final

in effect

Learn more about how DHEC develops air quality regulations

  1. The DHEC Bureau of Air Quality (BAQ) decides on a regulatory change following discussions with the public, a change in Federal requirements, internal meetings, or other events that make a change necessary.
  2. DHEC publishes a Notice of Drafting in the State Register (requires subscription, documents also posted at this website) that describes the proposed regulation and starts a 30-day comment period.
  3. DHEC may hold a stakeholder meeting at this stage.
  4. DHEC, at a Board Meeting held after the 30-day comment period ends, requests that the Board of Health and Environmental Control grant approval to publish a Notice of Proposed Regulation in the State Register and hold a Staff-Led Informational Forum (SIF) on the proposed regulation change.
  5. If the Board approves the request, DHEC publishes the Notice of Proposed Regulation in the State Register and on this website. This Notice includes the full text of the proposed regulation and a detailed explanation of each change. The Notice also announces the date of a Staff-Led Informational Forum (SIF) and a Public Hearing for the proposed regulatory change, and starts a second 30-day comment period on the proposed regulatory change.
  6. Following the publication of the Notice of Proposed Regulation for regulatory changes that also change the SIP, DHEC sends a pre-hearing submittal to EPA Region 4 in Atlanta for review.
  7. DHEC staff holds the SIF for the proposed regulation. The SIF is open to the public, and is an opportunity for the public to comment and ask questions about the proposed regulation. A court reporter records a transcript of the SIF.
  8. DHEC staff, at a second Board Meeting, requests that the Board approve the final Regulations, with revisions from the comment period if applicable.
  9. At this second Board Meeting, the Board holds a Public Hearing on the proposed regulation. The Public Hearing is open to the public, and the public is invited to comment. A court reporter records a verbatim transcript of this hearing.
  10. If the Board approves of the proposed regulatory change ion, and Legislative approval is not required, DHEC publishes a Notice of Final Regulation in the State Register. This Notice includes a detailed discussion and full text of the regulatory change. Legislative approval is not required when State regulatory changes are made to comply with a Federal standard.
  11. At the same time that the BAQ files the Notice of Final Regulation with the State Register, it sends a copy of the final SIP change package to EPA Region 4 in Atlanta.
  12. The new regulation change becomes effective on publication of the Notice of Final Regulation in the State Register. After publication, the BAQ archives documents involved in the regulatory change, and makes them available for public review through the DHEC Freedom of Information Office.
  13. If a proposed regulatory change requires Legislative review, and the Board approves of the change at step 9, above, then DHEC will submit the regulatory change to the South Carolina Legislature for approval. If DHEC submits those regulatory changes to the Legislature during its Legislative Session (typically January-May), then the Legislature has 120 days to address the regulatory change. If the Legislature does not act within 120 days, then the regulatory change automatically becomes effective. The Legislature may also approve of the regulatory change through the normal Legislative process. Following Legislative approval, DHEC will publish the Notice of Final Regulation, in step 10 above, in the next State Register following approval.

    The regulation-development process can take from 6 months to more than a year.

Learn more about EPA Rulemaking

DHEC & EPA Regulations

Many of the regulations that DHEC enforces are federal regulations, most of which are written by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA seeks public comment when it writes regulations, most often by publishing a proposed regulation and giving the public up to 60 days to provide feedback. For more information, see EPA's “The Basics of the Regulatory Process” page.

The EPA's Regulatory Development and Retrospective Review Tracker allows stakeholders to see the priority regulations that EPA is developing. is used by agencies throughout the federal government to share information on regulation development with the public. Each regulatory action has a docket, and the public can find proposed regulations, public comments, supporting information, and internal government communication about the regulation. The public can also submit comments on proposed regulations through also hosts federal agencies’ Regulatory Agendas, including EPA’s, which lists all planned and recently published regulations, not just the priority regulations. Federal agencies publish their Regulatory Agendas semiannually.

For more information please contact the Bureau of Air Quality at (803) 898-4123 or by email.