EPA Trisha Victor

Are Your Engines in Compliance with the NESHAP Subpart ZZZZ Standards?

The compliance date for the RICE NEHSAP has long passed, May 3, 2013; but did you complete all of the compliance requirements and are you continuing to comply with this regulation?  A client recently sought assistance as they believed they had completed the necessary retrofits for their engines and complied with all requirements of the NESHAP back in 2012 until a state inspector arrived and questioned specific records and testing for compliance with this regulation.  The facility soon realized that they had never completed initial compliance testing on the engines nor did they submit the appropriate notifications to EPA.  The NEHSAP Subpart ZZZZ regulations were not part of their existing state permits and the client was unaware of these federal rules, especially given the fact that the state has not taken delegation of this rule and the rule was not included in their permit from VADEQ.  compliant-stampMany states such as Virginia and Pennsylvania have not taken delegation of NSPS Subpart IIII or JJJJ or the NEHSAP Subpart ZZZZ, leaving the rules to be implemented and enforced by EPA.  This makes things very confusing to owners and operators of engines especially when their permits to include these important regulations.

Emergency engines should be complying with the NESHAP RICE rule by performing specific maintenance on the engine and keeping the appropriate records of maintenance, fuel use and operating hours.  Non-emergency engines must ensure compliance with a 70% CO emissions reduction by installing appropriate aftertreatment (a diesel oxidation catalyst) and performing emissions testing to demonstrate compliance.  Initial notification, recordkeeping and reporting, as well as performing emissions testing every 3 years or 8,760 hours to demonstrate compliance are also required.  Are you keeping the appropriate records to maintain compliance?  Have you completed subsequent emissions testing every 3 years to demonstrate compliance with the CO emissions reduction?

EPA Regulatory Update

Regulatory Update on DC Circuit Court of Appeals Decision

Regulatory Update on DC Circuit Court of Appeals Decision on EPA’s 100-Hour Emergency Demand Response Provision

On July 21, 2015, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals amended its previous decision in favor of EPA stating that the vacatur included only the 100 hour emergency demand response provision and that the hours allowed for maintenance, readiness checks and testing be left as part of the rule.  Therefore, the Court is only vacating the part of the rule that allows for 100 hours of operation for emergency demand response.

Then on August 14, 2015, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals granted EPA’s ehgmotion to stay the mandate allowing the 100 hour emergency demand response provision to remain in effect until May 1, 2016.  As stated in the previous article, this will allow for owners and operators the time to install necessary controls to meet the requirements for non-emergency engines.  Therefore, beginning May 1, 2016, any engine operating for any type of demand response program will need to comply with the non-emergency provisions of the applicable regulation (NSPS Subpart IIII for newer engines and NESHAP Subpart ZZZZ for existing engines).

In addition, EPA has responded to questions raised by Cerio stating that engines manufactured in 2011 or later are required to be certified to Tier 4 emission standards (either Tier 4 Interim or Tier 4 Final depending on manufacture date) as a non-emergency engine.  Therefore, model year (MY) 2011 and later engines previously considered emergency under the 100 hour rule that were only required to be Tier 2 certified will now be required to be Tier 4 certified to continue to operate for demand response.  In addition, EPA stated that these engines cannot be retrofit with aftertreatment to meet Tier 4 emission standards but instead must be removed and Tier 4 certified engines installed.  Cerio does not agree with this interpretation by EPA and is attempting to resolve this matter in favor of owners and operators by allowing the engines in question to be retrofit with the appropriate aftertreatment and tested in the field to demonstrate compliance with Tier 4 emission standards.

For additional information pertaining to the Court decision or other air quality concerns, please contact us.

Increasing Demand for Diesel Particulate Filters

Pollution from diesel engines is an ever increasing problem across the U.S. and it significantly contributes to air pollution, especially in urban areas. Diesel exhaust is made up of small particles, known as fine particulate matter. Fine particles pose a serious health risk because they can easily pass through the nose and throat and lodge themselves in the lungs. When inhaled repeatedly, the fine particles in diesel exhaust may aggravate asthma and allergies or cause other serious health problems including lung cancer.

On March 10, 2015, the EPA proposed requirements for implementing the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for fine particle pollution (also known as PM2.5) in areas that are designated nonattainment for these standards.  These requirements would apply to current and future fine particle pollution standards.

Many States have already begin to implement regulation that limit the output of PM in diesel exhaust emissions such as Title 17, Section 93115 of the CA Code of Regulations.  Within the State of California, South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) is the air pollution control agency for all of Orange County and the urban portions of Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, among the smoggiest regions of the U.S.  SCAQMD adopted/implemented Rule 1470 to regulate emissions exhaust of diesel engines.  Also in San Francisco, California, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) utilizes a Toxic Risk Assessment to determine how many hours a diesel engine may operate without utilize exhaust after-treatment.

PM from diesel engines is a widespread problem across New England and it significantly contributes to air pollution, especially in urban areas.  EPA New England is working to advance cleaner diesel engines, promote pollution control technology, prevent unnecessary idling and ultimately, make the black puff of smoke that can come from these engines an image of the past.

With continued tightening of clean air standards more facilities are turning to diesel particulate filters to ensure their combustion ignition engines meet emissions requirements for particulate matter (PM).  There are several diesel particulate filter solutions available to equipment owners/operators generally termed as passive or active filters.  While passive filters seem to satisfy many basic requirements for controlling PM, active filters appear to provide a much better return on investment as maintenance requirements are reduced and optimum operating conditions of the filter are regularly achieved.

For additional information pertaining to State and Federal requirements and solutions for controlling diesel particulate matter (PM), please contact us.

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