The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published a proposed rule that would allow electronics manufacturers to use the option of stack testing to calculate fluorinated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. 77 Fed. Reg. 63,537 (10/16/12). EPA currently requires facilities to calculate their emissions using default gas utilization rates and by-product formation rates. The new option would be available under the proposed rule beginning with the 2014 reporting year.

Amending 40 C.F.R. Part 98, Subpart I, the proposed rule would revise the default plasma etch and chamber cleaning gas utilization rates and by-product formation rates used to calculate fluorinated GHG emissions from plasma etch processes at semiconductor manufacturing facilities. Semiconductor manufacturers would be allowed to calculate their GHG emissions using those rates rather than developing recipe‑specific utilization rates and by-product formation rates. Comments on the proposed rule are due to EPA by December 17, 2012.