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Environment Agency launch consultation

operating the emissions trading
register for large combustion plants. Operators of Large Combustion Plants (LCPs) signed up to the new UK National Emissions Reduction Plan (NERP) may be required to justify the quality of their emissions data under a proposal being put forward for consultation this week.

The NERP scheme is aimed at reducing emissions of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and dust from LCPs, which can lead to human health concerns and to acidification problems. The Environment Agency, SEPA and the Chief Inspector in Northern Ireland are calling for comments from operators, industry groups and
environmental stakeholders on new guidance for verifying emissions reporting and
operating the trading Register.

With 96 participating LCPs across the United Kingdom, (77 in England and Wales, 18 in Scotland and one in Northern Ireland), operators will be encouraged to improve efficiency by allowing them to trade emission allowances with other participating LCPs.

Among the questions under the current consultation, participating LCP operators
have been asked whether smaller installations – with a thermal input of between 50 and 100MW – which are not required under the Large Combustion Plants Directive (LCPD) to have continuous emissions monitoring, should be required to demonstrate they have selected the most appropriate method for the determination of their emissions.

“The UK National Emissions Reduction Plan sets respective annual limits for the
emission of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and dust from participating LCPs, and will allow operators the opportunity to trade these allowances within the respective national bubble for each pollutant,” said Environment Agency Industry
Regulation Advisor Dr Peter Newman.

The Environment Agency on behalf of the other Regulators will operate a register
allowing the controlled trading of these emissions among participating LCPs from 1 January 2008 – similar to their role under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme.

“Even so operators must hold sufficient allowances to at least match their actual emissions at the end of each calendar year. This is one example of modern regulation in practice. It limits the total national annual emission of these
pollutants from participating LCPs across the UK and provides a more equitable way of sharing out the total allocations between operators.

“We aim to publish our response to comments received in October 2007. The NERP register will be set up by the end of November 2007, so that emissions trading can start from 1 January 2008.”

Responses to the consultation close on 18 September. The consultation can be
found at:
http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/yourenv/consultations.htm
http://www.sepa.org.uk/concentrations/index.htm
http://www.ehsni.gov.uk/pollution/ipc/htm/

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