Title V Operating Permits

Who Has to Obtain a Title V Permit?

Any major source:

  • A major source has actual or potential emissions at or above the major source threshold for any “air pollutant.”
  • The major source threshold for any air pollutant is 100 tons/year (this is the “default value”).
  • Lower thresholds apply in non-attainment areas (but only for the pollutant that are in non-attainment). (See Table below).
  • Major source thresholds for “hazardous air pollutants” (HAP) are 10 tons/year for a single HAP or 25 tons/year for any combination of HAP.
  • The EPA generally has not required non-major sources to get permits (except as shown below).

Any Source with a Major Source Permit under the New Source Review Permitting Program

“Affected Sources” under Acid Rain Rules; - Regardless of Size

Solid Waste Incineration Units under Section 129  - Regardless of Size

  • Municipal waste combustors (large and small)
  • Hospital/medical/infectious waste incinerators
  • Commercial and industrial solid waste incinerators
  • Other solid waste incinerators
  • Sewage sludge incinerators

Non-major Sources subject to National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) (MACT or GACT Standards)

  • Hazardous waste combusters
  • Portland cement manufacturers
  • Mercury cell chlor-alkali plants
  • Secondary lead smelters
  • Carbon black production 
  • Chemical manufacturing: chromium compounds
  • Primary copper smelting
  • Secondary copper smelting
  • Nonferrous metals area sources: zinc, cadmium, & beryllium
  • Glass Manufacturing
  • Electric Arc Furnace (EAF) Steelmaking Facilities
  • Gold Mine Ore Processing and Production

[Note that if any newly promulgated NSPS or MACT standard regulates area sources, it must clarify whether the area sources are required to obtain title V permits.] 

Certain Synthetic Minor Sources subject to NESHAP Requirements

  • Chemical Manufacturing

Non-major Sources subject to NESHAP and New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) Requirements

  • Municipal solid waste landfills (design capacity ≥ 2.5 million mega-grams and 2.5 million m3)

Any Source in a Source Category Designated by the EPA – None so far.

Table 1 – Lower Major Source Thresholds for Non-attainment Areas

Non-attainment Area Designation
VOC or NOx


100 tpy


100 tpy

100 tpy

100 tpy


50 tpy

50 tpy

70 tpy

Ozone transport region
(other than severe or extreme)

50 tpy (VOC only)


25 tpy


10 tpy

Note:  For the complete and current information on determining major source status or for a list of area sources required to obtain title V permits please consult the applicable regulations as published in 40 Code of Federal Regulations.

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