In December 2011, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its first-ever Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) regulations for power plants.
MATS is designed to limit mercury, acid gases, and other pollution deemed toxic from the nation’s power plants. The EPA granted power plants four years to be in compliance with the regulation – and now, that deadline is almost here.
MATS sets standards for coal and oil-fired generating units that have a 25-megawatt or higher capacity. They are designed to manage Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPS) produced by a unit.
The standard is based on maximum achievable control technology (MACT), which has the greatest potential impact on the industry at large. This is in contrast to risk-based or generally available control technology (GACT) standards. Plants will be tested quarterly for compliance.
Existing control technologies associated with these standards for pollutants identified in MATS include:
- Mercury: Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) with Flue-gas Desulfurization (FGD), Activated Carbon Injection (ACI), ACI with Fabric Filter (FF) or Electrostatic Precipitators (ESP)
- Non-mercury metals: FF, ESP
- Dioxins and furans: Work Practice Standard (inspection, adjustment, and/or maintenance and repairs to ensure optimal combustion)
- Acid gases: FGD, Dry Sorbent Injection (DSI), DSI with FF or ESP
- Sulfur dioxide: FGD, DSI
The big news that plants need to be aware of right now is that the deadline for compliance is March 16, 2015.
What do you need to do in order to be in compliance? Assuming your facility has taken the steps necessary to retrofit or install equipment that can meet the MACT standard, you will need help inspecting, evaluating, and maintaining your equipment so that it is in full compliance.
ProcessBarron can assist you with not only analyzing your current systems, but maintaining them now and in the future to ensure complete compliance with MATS. Your equipment may need to be retrofitted or upgraded in order to meet compliance. It will also need to be maintained efficiently and professionally so that your plant stays in compliance and doesn’t run afoul of the strict standards imposed by MATS and the EPA.
The deadline is almost here, and quarterly inspections aren’t too far behind. Contact us to learn more about MATS compliance and how ProcessBarron can help.