EPA’s Boiler MACT Rules
EPA has, yet again, been tasked with a reissuance of a very controversial rule – the Boiler MACT. The DC Circuit Court mandated that EPA issue a proposed rule and, as such, they have. MACT, of course, is an acronym for Maximum Achievable Control Technology and is designated by utilizing the top performing ‘units’ in the country. Normally, EPA will take an individual unit (boiler, in this case) and assess its emissions. Quite different on this round though – EPA, rather, took the top 12% of boilers operating ‘in the wild’ and cherry-picked their constituents of concern. Fine, right? Not this time – they actually took the best performers on INDIVIDUAL CONSTITUENTS rather than the entire sweep of chemicals that they are wishing to regulate under this MACT. In short, if Boiler A had great numbers for mercury emissions but lousy numbers for particulate matter, they only took the mercury emissions in to account for promulgation of the rule.
Like it or not, the MACT is in the pipeline and will plop out the end in due time – in fact, the latest word is as early as the beginning of next year with the final rule also going in for the 2012 year.
Here’s who will be snagged by this MACT:
1: Major sources of HAPs that burn coal, biomass, natural gas (or equivalent) or liquid fuels. Needless to say, if you’re a major for HAPs and have a boiler, you’re likely in…
2: Minor sources of HAPs that burn coal. Nope, not a worry for you if you’re a natural gas burner. You’re not in this round… maybe later but, not yet.
Of course, there are twists and turns within the MACT – for example, emergency fuels and such but, for the most part, you’re in if you’re one of the above.
But, wait a minute – didn’t EPA ‘stay’ the Boiler MACT? Yep. They did but, ONLY FOR MAJOR SOURCES. The JJJJJJ MACT (Boilers for minor HAP sources) is still out there, coming down the pipe, and will require you to conduct an energy audit and will establish a few additional hoops to jump through depending on if you’re above or below the 10 million BTU threshold.
For Minor Sources only – a reporting deadline is RAPIDLY approaching and will be upon you before you know it. Simply put, it’s a reporting deadline to declare applicability to the MINOR SOURCE MACT. The due date to have this to your regulatory agency (federal, state, local) is September 17, 2011. This means it’s time to get on the ball and get your notification in if it is applicable to your source.
For more information on the Boiler MACTs – or any of the other 130+ MACTs, let us know. We are currently assisting major and minor sources from metal cutting to surface coating and a variety of other source categories subject to 40 CFR Part 60 (NSPS) and 63 (MACT).