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U.S. EPA Finalizes Revised Emissions Standards for Internal Combustion Engines

On January 14, 2013, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized amendments to the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for stationary reciprocating internal combustion engines (RICE).  In addition to amending several rules governing the operation of emergency engines, EPA’s final rules creates a new subcategory for existing 4-stroke spark ignition RICE with more than 500 horsepower that are area sources and where the engines are located in “remote” areas.  This new subcategory covers the type of engines commonly used for natural gas production and transmission.

For engines in remote areas, the rule establishes management practices and associated testing and monitoring requirements.  Additionally, for engines in populated areas, operators are required to install catalytic controls, conduct performance tests on the catalyst, and implement certain measures to control the catalyst inlet temperature.  The final rule will be effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.