BlueScape How Do I Get an Air Permit in California? Webinar 3-11-14


Published on

This webinar was performed by James Westbrook, President of BlueScape Environmental to provide you with practical training from the viewpoint of a facility manager or project developer. For projects in California, you will learn how to assess whether a permit is required for new or modified equipment, to review the feasibility of meeting permitting requirements and rule conditions, to complete the steps for writing an application to obtain a permit, and to negotiate permit conditions with the air district. James can be reached at 877-486-9257.

For a video presentation, visit BlueScape's YouTube channel at Also see

Published in: Environment
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total Views
On Slideshare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

BlueScape How Do I Get an Air Permit in California? Webinar 3-11-14

  1. 1. How Do I Get an Air Permit in California? A Practical Guide for Facility Managers March 11, 2014 James A. Westbrook 858-774-2009 mobile
  2. 2. Topics   •  What  situa-ons  trigger  air  permi3ng   requirements?   •  Is  an  air  permit  required?   •  Air  permi3ng  steps  in  California   –  Preliminary  design  review  and  permit  feasibility   –  Applica-on:  fees,  forms,  rule  review,  New  Source   Review,  special  technical  studies,  etc.   –  Applica-on  submiGal  process   –  Nego-a-ng  a  final  permit  to  construct   –  From  permit  to  construct  to  permit  to  operate  
  3. 3. About  the  Presenter   •  Nearly  30  years  experience  with  air  permi3ng  in   California,  more  than  100  projects   •  Power  plants,  industrial  cogen,  LNG  facili-es,  building   materials,  aerospace,  refineries,  oil  &  gas  processing   •  Na-onal  Experience  –  California,  Midwest  &  Gulf   •  Solve  tough  air  permi3ng  issues  and  get  the  permit:   -­‐  Develop  permi3ng  strategy,  quickly  obtain  permits   -­‐  Reduce  impacts  on  opera-onal  flexibility   -­‐  Excel  in  technical  analysis  tools,  emission  controls  and   modeling   -­‐  Develop  workable  monitoring,  recordkeeping  and  repor-ng   -­‐  Established  agency  rela-onships,  lead  nego-a-ons    
  4. 4. California  Air  Districts   •  15  Air  Basins   •  35  Air  Districts   •  Similar  permit  process   •  There  are  differences   between  each  district:   –  Fees   –  Forms:  general,  equipment-­‐ specific   –  Applicable  rules  and   requirements   –  Emission  factors  
  5. 5. diesel  engine   new  coa-ng  process   modified   paint   booth   loading   opera-on   boiler   portable   sprayer   portable  concrete   plant   cooling  tower   chemical   storage   baghouse   hospital   data  center   oil  drilling   refinery   heater   Title  V   facility   heat   trea-ng   merger   third-­‐party   con-guous  proper-es  
  6. 6. Business  and  Regulatory  Changes   Can  Trigger  Air  Permit  Needs   BUSINESS  CHANGES:   •  Change,  expand  or  consolidate  opera-ons   –  New  equipment   –  Modified  equipment   •  Physical  modifica-on   •  Change  in  method  of  opera-on   –  Change  in  equipment  descrip-on,  permit  condi-ons   •  Upgrade,  retrofit  or  replace  equipment   –  New  or  modified  equipment   –  Change  in  permit  condi-ons  (not  physically  modified)   –  Emission  reduc-ons,  and  apply  for  offsets   •  Change  of  ownership,  mergers,  acquisi-on   •  Rental  units,  exemp-ons  from  Portable  Registra-on   REGULATORY  CHANGES:   •  Comply  with  new  emission  control  requirements   •  New  Federal  rule  applicability   –  Title  V,  NESHAP,  NSPS  
  7. 7. Why  is  an  Air  Permit  Required?   South  Coast  AQMD  Rule  201:   A  person  shall  not  build,  erect,  install,  alter  or  replace  any  equipment   or  agricultural  permit  unit,  the  use  of  which  may  cause  the  issuance  of   air  contaminants  or  the  use  of  which  may  eliminate,  reduce  or  control   the  issuance  of  air  contaminants  without  first  obtaining  wri:en   authoriza<on  for  such  construc<on  from  the  Execu<ve  Officer.     Therefore,  equipment:   -­‐  Has  to  cause,  reduce  or  control  issuance  of  air  contaminants   -­‐  Has  to  be  within  jurisdic-on  of  the  air  district,  generally  a   sta-onary  source  (not  portable  or  mobile)   -­‐  Not  otherwise  exempted  from  permit  requirements     Consequence  of  non-­‐compliance:  viola3ons,  fines,  even  an  order  to   shutdown!  
  8. 8. Permit  Review  Approach   •  Iden-fy  all  equipment  affected  by  changes   •  Establish  permit  ownership   •  Know  ways  equipment  will  be  used,  and  alterna-ves   •  Will  air  emissions  occur  or  be  controlled?   •  Facility  (major/minor)  and  equipment  permit  status   •  Sta-onary,  portable  or  mobile?   –  Consider  portable  or  mobile  source  regula-ons   •  Take  ac-on:   -­‐  Document  negligible  emissions,  or,   -­‐  Exempt  it,  contact  district  or  memo  to  file   -­‐  Register  as  portable  equipment,  if  applicable   -­‐  Permit  it  as  sta-onary  new  or  modified  equipment  
  9. 9. Air  Permit  Exemp-ons?1   Equipment   Ra-ng  /   Throughput   Business  Use   Exempt  from  Air  Permit?   Diesel  engine   100  hp,  fixed   Emergency   backup   No,  >50  hp  needs  a   permit   Air  compressor   75  hp,  portable   Construc-on   Yes,  if  registered  portable   Boiler   1.5  MMBtu/hr   Process  heat   Yes,  but  must  register   Storage  Tank   500  gal  capacity   Diesel  storage   Yes   Storage  Tank   10,000  gal  capacity   Gasoline   storage   No   Baghouse   2,000  cfm   Machining   Yes,  if  low  VOC  materials   Spray  Coa-ng   200  gallons/day   Aerospace   No   1South  Coast  AQMD  Rule  219   Note:  Source-­‐specific  rules  may  apply  even  if  permit-­‐ exempt  
  10. 10. New  Source  Review   •  Emission  increases  from  new  or  modified  equipment,   exceeding  applicability  thresholds   •  Modified  –  physical  modifica-on  or  change  in  method  of   opera-on   –  Throughput  change  without  changing  a  permit  limit  does  not  count   •  In  California,  generally  for  non-­‐aGainment  area  pollutants   –  Ozone  precursors  (NOx,  VOC),  PM10,  PM2.5   •  Major  source  facili-es,  special  requirements   •  Unit  or  Project  Based   •  NSR  Requirements:   –  Evalua-on  under  CEQA  (project)   –  Review  of  impacts  on  nearby  schools  (project)   –  Best  available  control  technology  (unit  or  project)   –  Emission  Offsets  (unit  or  project)   –  Modeling  for  ambient  air  quality  standards  (project)   –  Health  Risk  Assessment  screening  for  air  toxics  (unit  or  project)  
  11. 11. Example  Permit  Situa-ons  -­‐  Test   1.  Install  3  new  boilers  x  1.5  MMBtu/hr  each   2.  Rent  backup  portable  diesel  engine  for  90    days,  un-l  electrical  upgrades  complete       3.  Mobile  gasoline  fueling  opera-on,  500  gal   on  a  diesel  pickup  truck     4.  1,000  gallon  closed  hydrochloric  acid  tank,    vented  during  filling   5.  Replace  10  boilers  with  a  4  MW  gas    turbine,  decrease  in  all  emissions      
  12. 12. Opera-ng  w/o  a  Permit?   •  What  if  I  find  I  am  opera-ng  without  a  permit?   •  Document  why  and  how  you  learned  about  it  –  you  will  need   these  details!   •  Consult  an  aGorney  familiar  with  air  districts  about  poten-al   legal  ac-on  against  your  company,  and  disclosure  needs   •  File  an  applica-on  with  the  air  district  as  soon  as  possible   –  Depending  on  aGorney  recommenda-on,  work  out  with  air  district   –  File  forms  and  pay  fees  as  soon  as  possible  when  known   –  Amnesty  may  be  possible  with  higher  fee  payment   –  Air  district  might  allow  a  Compliance  Agreement   •  Breakdown?   –  Has  to  meet  breakdowns  rule,  unforeseen,  no-ce  required   •  Variance  to  con-nue  opera-ng?   –  You  must  show  good  cause,  beyond  control  and  not  gran-ng   variance  is  taking  of  property  
  13. 13. Example  –  Opera-ng  without  a  Permit   ABC  Energy  acquires  a  cogen  facility  with  four  gas  engines  from  ZYX  Energy,  located  at  a  large   industrial  host  facility.       ABC  does  a  scheduled  portable  analyzer  reading  and  finds  that  NOx  emissions  are  exceeding  the  9   ppm  permit  and  rule  limit.  ABC  consults  past  records  from  ZYX,  and  finds  that  records  exist  of  similar   exceedances  that  were  never  shown  or  reported  to  the  air  district.  Each  -me  before  a  reading  or   source  test,  emissions  were  “dialed  in”  and  new  official  readings  taken.  Upon  inves-ga-on  ABC  finds   that  there  is  a  problem  with  the  air/fuel  ra-o  controller  on  the  older  three-­‐way  catalyst  control   system.  A  consultant  anonymously  calls  the  air  district  and  learns  that  this  is  a  common  problem,   with  NOVs  and  heavy  fines  recently  issued  to  several  companies.    ABC  wants  to  keep  opera<ng  un<l   a  fix  can  be  done,  what  should  ABC  Energy  do  next?     ABC  Energy  knows  that  a  fix  means  replacing  the  air/fuel  ra-o  controller.  This  equipment  is  part  of   the  emissions  control  system,  and  named  on  the  permit;  this  requires  a  permit  applica-on.  A   breakdown  cannot  be  claimed,  as  this  is  a  known  and  ongoing  condi-on  that  has  not  been  reported.   A  variance  allowing  con-nued  opera-on  could  be  possible  while  a  fix  is  made,  but  ABC  should  have  a   problem  making  the  findings  given  the  problem  was  not  fixed  by  ZYX  when  first  known.  AGempts  to   cover  up  the  problem  could  be  seen  as  willing  intent  to  violate  the  rules.     In  consulta-on  with  an  aGorney,  ABC’s  best  op-on  is  likely  to  file  an  applica-on  to  replace  the  air/ fuel  ra-o  controller  and  perform  a  new  source  test  as  soon  as  possible.  ABC  Energy  should  nego-ate   a  work-­‐out  with  air  district  staff  to  con-nue  opera-ng,  paying  higher  permit  fees  to  mi-gate  any   excess  emissions  with  more  frequent  portable  analyzer  readings.    However,  full  shutdown  may  be   required  un-l  the  situa-on  is  fixed.      
  14. 14. Recommenda-ons   •  Keep  an  accurate  equipment  inventory  and  log   books   •  Periodically  audit  facility  equipment  &  permits,  for   changes  in  rules  or  exemp-ons   •  Establish  a  management  of  change  policy,  to   evaluate  changes  for  business  ac-ons   •  Maintain  a  working  rela-onship  with  agency  staff   •  Hire  experienced  consultants  and  aGorneys   –  Project  permit  design,  avoiding  opera-onal  issues   –  Address  issues  before  changes  are  made   –  Correc-ve  ac-on,  if  out  of  compliance  with  permit  and  rule   requirements  
  15. 15. Air Permit Application Steps in California
  16. 16. What  are  your  Permi3ng  Objec-ves?   •  Get  the  permit,  move  project  development   forward   –  Quick,  smooth,  hassle-­‐free  process   •  Save  money  on  equipment  and  emission  controls   •  Avoid  mistakes  in  equipment  selec-on   •  Minimize  regulatory  limita-ons  and  constraints   •  Maximize  opera-onal  flexibility   •  Get  ahead  of  changing,  stricter  requirements   •  Allow  for  future  plant  expansion  if  needed    An  air  permit  is  a  cri3cal  piece  of  business  insurance  !!  
  17. 17. Air  Permi3ng  Process  -­‐  Summary  
  18. 18. Air  Permi3ng  Process  in  California   •  Permit  feasibility  review   •  Pre-­‐applica-on  Mee-ng  with  Agency   –  Hear  what  they  want,  tell  ‘em  what  you  want   –  Find  out  about  and  file  for  Expedited  Permi3ng   •  Complete  Applica-on  Package  SubmiGal   –  Fees   –  Cover  LeGer   –  Forms  –  general,  equipment-­‐specific   –  Technical  Report  –  emissions,  BACT,  applicable  rules   –  Air  Quality  Impact  Analysis   –  Equipment  Specifica-ons   –  Manufacturer  Guarantees   –  Site  plans  and  area  maps   •  Applica-on  SubmiGal  Mee-ng   •  Agency  Completeness  Determina-on  Period   •  Agency  Applica-on  Review  Period   •  Nego-ate  Permit  to  Construct  (or  Authority  to  Construct)   •  Convert  Permit  to  Construct  to  Permit  to  Operate    
  19. 19. Planning  &  Feasibility  Analysis   •  Plan  early  at  the  drawing  board   •  Technical  Issues  review  –  “fatal-­‐flaw”  analysis   •  Data  development  –  project  design,  vendors,  geography     •  Issues  List:   –  Best  Available  Control  Technology  (BACT),  by  unit   –  Prohibitory  Rules  –  exemp-ons,  limits,  monitoring,  recordkeeping  and   repor-ng  requirements   –  Startup  and  Shutdown  Emissions,  Varying  Condi-ons   –  Emission  Offsets,  by  facility  /  project   –  Title  V  and  PSD  permi3ng,  by  facility  /  project   –  Air  Quality  Impacts  by  project   •  Ambient  Standards   •  Health  Risk  Assessment   –  Poten-al  to  develop  Emission  Credits  for  sale   •  Community  Support  and  Involvement   •  How  feasible  is  this  project,  what  must  happen?   •  Develop  a  Permi3ng  Strategy  and  Workplan    
  20. 20. Applicability  Thresholds   •  Emissions  calcula-ons  are  used  to  determine   applicability  of  the  following:   –  New  Source  Review     •  Best  Available  Control  Technology  (BACT)   •  Emission  Offsets   •  Public  No-ce   •  Health  Risk  Assessment  (HRA)     •  Daily  Emission  Limits   •  Monitoring,  Recordkeeping,  Repor-ng     –  Federal  Emission  Standards,  Title  V  and  PSD   –  Air  Quality  Impact  Assessment  (AQIA)   –  Poten-al  Emission  Reduc-on  Credits  to  bank      
  21. 21. Threshold  differences  among  Districts:   District:   BACT   Title  V  (Major  Source)   South  Coast  AQMD   None;  must  use  BACT     (policy  is  1.0  lb/day)   10  tons/yr  NOx  or  VOC;  100   tons/yr  SOx;     50  tons/yr  CO/yr;  and  70   tons/yr  PM10  per  facility   Bay  Area  AQMD   10  lb/day  NOx,  CO,  POC,   NPOC,  SO2  or  PM10   100  tons/yr  NOx,  SOx,  Pb,   VOC,  CO,  or  PM10  per   facility     San  Diego  APCD   10  lb/day  NOx,  VOC,  SOx  or   PM10   100  tons/yr    NOx,  CO,  VOC,   SOx  or  PM10  per  facility     San  Joaquin  Valley  APCD   None;  must  use  BACT   10  tons  NOx  or  VOC/yr;  100   tons  CO/yr;     and  70  tons/year  PM10  or   SOx  per  facility  
  22. 22. Rule  Review   •  Your  rule  review  may  include  but  is  not  limited  to  the   applicability  determina-on  of  the  following  rules:     –  California  Environmental  Quality  Act  (CEQA)   –  New  Source  Review  (NSR)   –  New  Source  Performance  Standards  (NSPS)   –  Na-onal  Emission  Standards  for  Hazardous  Air  Pollutants   (NESHAP)   –  Airborne  Toxic  Control  Measure  (ATCM)   –  Preven-on  of  Significant  Deteriora-on  (PSD)   •  We  suggest  looking  at  prior  permit  evalua-ons  from   your  air  district  to  determine  the  basic  content  and   structure  of  your  rule  review  sec-on.    
  23. 23. Air  District  Rule  Structure  (South  Coast  AQMD)       I.  General  Provision     II.  Permits   III.  Fees,  Including  Permi3ng  Fees  in  Tables   IV.  Prohibi3ons   ….   IX.  Standards  of  Performance  for  New  Sta-onary  Sources  (Federal  NSPS)   X.  Na-onal  Emission  Standards  for  Hazardous  Air  Pollutants  (Federal   NESHAPS)   XI.  Source  Specific  Standards   ….   XIII.  New  Source  Review   XIV.  Toxics  and  Other  Non-­‐Criteria  Pollutants   XVII.  Preven-on  of  Significant  Deteriora-on  (Federal  Major  Source  PSD)   XX.  Regional  Clean  Air  Incen3ves  Market  (RECLAIM)   …..   XX.  Title  V  Permits  (Federal  Opera3ng  Permits)   XXI.  Acid  Rain  Permit  Program   …..  
  24. 24. Air  Quality  Impact  Analysis   •  Na-onal  and  state  ambient  air  quality   standards   –  NO2,  PM10,  PM2.5,  SO2,  CO  and  VOC  (ozone)   •  Health  Risk  Assessment  (HRA)  for  Air  Toxics   –  Cancer  risk:  1  in  one  million  to  10  in  one  million   cases   –  Noncancer  chronic  or  acute  risk   •  Agency  will  run  an  independent  analysis   •  Must  show  compliance  to  get  the  permit  
  25. 25. Health  Risk  Modeling  Requirements   •  Obtain  modeling  guidance  from  your  Air  District   •  Define  your  area  as  either  urban  or  rural  using  your  guidance   •  Define  your  source(s)  as  point,  area,  and/or  volume  sources   •  Source  parameters:  exhaust  release  height,  stack  diameter,  exhaust   temperature,  exhaust  flow  rate,  etc.   •  Nearby  Building  Dimensions:  height,  width,  length  and  base   eleva-on   •  Iden-fy  sensi-ve  receptors  within  your  modeling  area   •  Imported  files:     –  Meteorological  Data:  Obtained  from  your  Air  District   –  Terrain  Data:  Can  be  obtained  using  WebGIS   –  Base  Map  (Op-onal):  can  be  purchased  through  an  aerial  or  satellite  imaging   company     •  Use  the  results  from  your  model  to  calculate  the  maximum  excess   cancer  risk  from  your  project  sta-onary  source(s).    
  26. 26. Permit  Review  and  Nego-a-on   •  Carefully  review  and  meet  with  the  agency   –  Much  can  be  nego-ated  to  allow  flexibility   •  Public  Review  and  Comment  period,  if   applicable  –  add  30-­‐45  days   •  Final  permit  issuance  for  construc-on   •  1-­‐2  years  to  complete  project  construc-on   •  Do  I  need  the  ATC  permit  before  I  can  start   any  construc-on?    
  27. 27. Permit  Opera-ons  –  from  ATC/PTC  to  PTO   •  Start  opera-ons  and  show  compliance   –  With  the  permit  and  applicable  rules  and   regula-ons   •  Monitoring,  recordkeeping,  and  repor-ng   procedures  –  in  place,  track,  track!   •  No-fica-ons  and  protocols  to  agency   •  Emissions  source  tes-ng   •  Agency  ini-al  inspec-on  –  show  all  permit   condi-ons  are  met   •  Upon  compliance,  permit  to  operate  (PTO)    
  28. 28. Summary  -­‐  Air  Permi3ng   •  Establish  a  permit  management  program   –  Inventory  equipment,  track  changes,  record   determina-ons   •  Understand  the  air  permi3ng  steps   •  Get  the  right  resources  to  help  you  through   challenging  parts  of  air  permi3ng:   –  Designing  a  project  to  meet  your  objec-ves   –  Technical  studies,  emissions,  BACT,  modeling   –  Nego-a-ng  permit  condi-ons  with  the  agency   •  If  you  need  it,  go  get  the  Air  Permit!  
  29. 29. Contact  Informa-on   James  Westbrook   BlueScape  Environmental   Mobile:  858-­‐774-­‐2009   Connect  with  me  on  Linkedin!     The  webinar  presenta<on  will  be  posted  on   Slideshare  and  YouTube  (search  for  BlueScape)