Emissions from all kinds of combustion processes are always in the news, and recent legislation relating to emissions from medium sized combustion plants is starting to affect many SMEs all around the UK. The original Directive in 2015 was transposed into UK legislation at the beginning of 2018, and over the next few years all combustion plants of 1MW nett rated thermal input and above will be captured by the Environmental Permitting Regulations (EPR). The rules cover all fuels (solid, liquid or gaseous) in all combustion units (boilers, engines and turbines) in almost all industrial and commercial sectors, and every boiler or engine >1MW on every site that is 'in scope' will eventually have to be registered with the Environment Agency, SEPA, NRW or NIEA as appropriate. Some smaller gas and oil fired engines will also be affected.
Emission Limit Values (ELV) for NOx, SOx and dust have been set, and EPR permits will be issued that stipulate the allowable emissions from the plant and may place other constraints on plant operation. Combustion plants in environmentally sensitive areas will probably have to operate at even tighter ELVs than the published figures. New plants (those being designed and installed now) must be permitted before first operation; existing plants will be brought into line over the next 10 years according to individual plant size.