Newsroom

EPA Proposes Limited Reconsideration of Emission Standards for Boilers and Incinerators

Posted Monday, January 26th, 2015

On January 21, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published three proposals reconsidering certain aspects of its maximum achievable control technology standards for major-source and area-source industrial, commercial, and institutional boilers (IB MACT), and its new source performance standards (NSPS) and emission guidelines for commercial and industrial solid waste incineration (CISWI) units.

The major-source IB MACT reconsideration addresses (1) the definitions of startup and shutdown periods and applicable work practice standards, (2) revisions to carbon monoxide limits based on a carbon monoxide level of 130 parts per million, and (3) the use of particulate matter (PM) continuous parameter monitoring systems, including the consequences of exceeding the operating parameter. The proposal also deletes the rule’s affirmative defense provision for malfunctions in light of recent case law vacating similar affirmative defense provisions in the Portland Cement MACT. See NRDC v. EPA, 749 F.3d 1055 (D.C. Cir. 2014). The proposed technical corrections address a variety of inadvertent errors included in the final rule. Notably, EPA is proposing to exclude electric generating units (EGU) covered by EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) and natural gas-fired EGUs (as defined in MATS).

The area-source IB MACT reconsideration addresses (1) the definitions of startup and shutdown periods, (2) alternative PM standards for new oil-fired boilers that combust low-sulfur oil, (3) the establishment of a subcategory for limited-use boilers and the applicable standards for that subcategory, (4) provisions that eliminate further performance testing for PM for certain boilers, and (5) provisions that eliminate fuel sampling at certain coal-fired boilers. The proposal also deletes the rule’s affirmative defense provision for malfunctions and includes several technical corrections.

The CISWI NSPS and emission guidelines reconsideration addresses (1) the definition of “CEMS data during startup and shutdown periods,” (2) the PM limit for the waste-burning kiln subcategory, (3) the fuel variability factor for coal-burning energy recovery units, and (4) the definition of kiln. The proposal also deletes the rule’s affirmative defense provision for malfunction, corrects various typos, and clarifies certain applicability provisions relating to incinerator units and air curtain incinerator units subject to the 2000 CISWI NSPS.

Comments on all three proposals are due March 9, 2015.

For additional information, contact Andrew Holway.

Filter by practice area