The European Commission has proposed a new Medium Combustion Plant (MCP) Directive. This Directive was proposed as part of the European Commission’s Clean Air Policy Programme which came out on the 18th December 2013. It is designed to reduce emissions to the atmosphere and fill the regulatory gap for combustion plants with a thermal input between 1 to 50MW. In May 2015 the European Commission’s Environmental, Public Health and Food Safety committee (ENVI) agreed on stricter rules regarding the new directive. This article summarises some of the key conditions of the new directive.
Who will this affect?
Members within many sectors of the NFU may be affected by these changes. The most common examples of the use of Medium Combustion Plants in agriculture are:
- For heating pig and poultry housing;
- For heating glasshouses, particularly for salad production;
- For grain drying;
- In some circumstances in larger dairy units for heating water;
- Anaerobic digester plants (including those fed by solely purpose grown energy crops).
The directive will impact upon combustion plants with any fuel source including conventional LPG, biomass, other solid fuels and fuel oil.
The MCP will include emission limit factors (ELVs) which are far more stringent than those outlined within current Environment Agency permits for Anaerobic Digestion plants. The new ELVs are outlined withina recent briefing note. It will also be a requirement for monitoring to be undertaken on at least a yearly basis.
The NFU recognises the need for the new directive but is greatly concerned about the short-time frame which are proposed by the commission for Medium Combustion Plants already in use to become compliant with these ELVs and monitoring requires. Those plants with a net thermal input of 15-50MW must be compliant by 2020 whilst for 5-15MW medium combustion plants it is 2022 and 2027 if the thermal input is 1-5MW.
There is still an opportunity to provide comments on this proposed new directive before ENVI meet for a final time in June 2015. If you have any comments on how this newly proposed directive will impact upon your business, please contact Martin Rogers on bWFydGluLnJvZ2Vyc0BuZnUub3JnLnVr