New York Finalizes AIM Coatings Emissions Rule

On Dec.31, 2019, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) released its final emissions rule for Architectural and Industrial Maintenance (AIM) Coatings. New York’s rule is based on the Northeast Ozone Transport Commission (OTC) Phase II model AIM rule limiting volatile organic compound (VOC) content; however, it deviates from the OTC model in that NYSDEC has decided to eliminate floor coatings from the small container exemption. It also varies from the other OTC rules in that it provides a shortened sell-through period of two years and four months, whereas every other AIM rule includes at least a three-year sell through period.

New York’s final sell-through date is May 1, 2023.

In comments during the rule development process, ACA had urged NYSDEC to maintain the Small Container Exemption and expand the sell-through period to three years. ACA maintains that the small container exemption is the only remaining alternative compliance option, or safety valve, in the NYSDEC AIM Rule, and continues to be a critical for the paint and coatings industry, especially given the cold and wet climate of New York state. This exemption provides a “safety net,” or last resort option allowing for the use of traditional products in challenging application scenarios in the field as well as when limits in categories become more stringent or a category is eliminated.

New York’s final rule also didn’t address ACA’s concerns with the definition for ‘Metallic Pigmented’ coatings, as written the definition suggests that metallic pigmented coatings must meet the Industrial Maintenance (limit of 250 g/l), however the VOC limit table includes a Metallic Pigmented coatings limit of 500 g/l. ACA has once again requested NYSDEC fix this typo or provide additional guidance.

ACA, through its AIM VOC Committee, tracks advocates and provides compliance assistance on the various AIM VOC regulations.

Contact ACA’s David Darling for more information.

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