USEPA issues New Boiler MACT Regulations

On December 21, 2012, the EPA issued a final set of rules under its Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology program (referred to as “Boiler MACT”). These rules set emissions standards and impose maintenance and reporting requirements on the operators of an estimated 200,000 boilers and process heaters nationwide. While the EPA states that its final rule “dramatically cuts the cost of implementation” compared to earlier proposed versions of the rule while affecting a minimal number of boilers and process heaters, critics complain that the costs of compliance Though the new rules set forth a variety of standards for boilers and process heaters, the most significant impact will be on those units fueled by biomass, coal or oil. Rigorous emissions standards for suspended metals, carbon monoxide and hydrogen chloride have been put into place for these units, as well as requirements for regular tune-ups, depending on the total output of the unit. Some facilities will further require a one-time energy assessment in order to identify cost-effective efficiency improvements. Under this regulatory regime, boilers constructed after June 4, 2010 must be in immediate compliance while older boilers will be given a three-year grace period to conform to the new standards. The affected boilers and process heaters are separated into two categories. Under the Clean Air Act (“CAA”), a “source” is another name for a stack, vent or opening that releases a pollutant – in this case, each boiler is considered a “source.” Pursuant to the Boiler MACT regulations, a “major source” is defined as a source which puts out ten tons per year of any one hazardous pollutant, or 25 tons per year of all hazardous air pollutants combined, whereas “area source” refers to all units that emit less than this amount. The regulations identify 19 subcategories of boilers and heaters based on unit design and fuel type, with each subcategory being subjected to a different set of emissions standards. For all major source units regardless of fuel type, as well as larger area source units (10,000,000+ btu per hour) which are fueled by coal, oil or biomass, a one-time energy assessment is required. This assessment is to include a visual inspection of the structural elements of the unit and the facility in which it is installed, a review of facility and unit operation and maintenance procedures, review of fuel usage, an inventory of major energy consuming systems and energy management practices. Based on this assessment, recommendations for improvements in energy conservation and efficiency will be issued, including the cost of necessary improvements. Tune-ups are required for most major source units, as well as those at area sources burning coal, oil or biomass. The frequency of the required maintenance depends on the specific fuel type and unit design. These tune-ups require inspection of the burner and flame pattern, calibrating the systems controlling air/fuel ratio, and optimization of carbon monoxide emissions. To learn more, visit www.epa.gov/airtoxics/boiler/boilerpg.html. DiFrancesco, Bateman, Coley, Yospin, Kunzman, Davis, Lehrer & Flaum, PC is a full service law firm in New Jersey which provides a broad range of legal services, including the representation of clients in environmental and defense of toxic exposure matters. For additional information about the matters in this bulletin or in the firm’s environmental practice, please contactSteven A. Kunzman, Esq. who heads our Environmental and Latent Injury Litigation Department. The information contained in this blog is intended solely for informational purposes; it is a advertising publication of DiFrancesco, Bateman, Coley, Yospin, Kunzman, Davis, Lehrer & Flaum P.C.This publication is intended to alert recipients of developments in the law and is not intended to provide legal counsel, advice or opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. The contents are intended as general information only. You are urged to consult a member of this firm or your own attorney concerning your particular situation and any specific legal questions you might have.


DiFrancesco, Bateman, Kunzman, Davis, Lehrer & Flaum PC (http://www.dbnjlawblog.com) is a full service law firm in New Jersey which provides a broad range of legal services. For additional information about the matters in this bulletin or in the firm’s Employment Practice, please contact Richard P. Flaum, Esq.

The information contained in this blog is intended solely for informational purposes; it is a advertising publication of DiFrancesco, Bateman, Kunzman, Davis, Lehrer & Flaum P.C.This publication is intended to alert recipients of developments in the law and is not intended to provide legal counsel, advice or opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. The contents are intended as general information only. You are urged to consult a member of this firm or your own attorney concerning your particular situation and any specific legal questions you might have.