EU to tackle pollution, review large combustion plants permits

EPA/DANIEL REINHARDT/FILE PICTURE

The sun sets behind a smoking chimney in Wismar, Germany. Clean energy transition is a priority for the European Commission, which will be crucial for the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

Large combustion plants – with a total thermal input of more than 50 megawatt are the biggest sectoral emitters in the EU


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On July 31, the European Commission took action to tackle pollution from large combustion plants, such as power stations and district heating plants, which are responsible for about one-third of all air pollutants from industry.

Large combustion plants – with a total thermal input of more than 50 megawatt, irrespective of the type of fuel used – are the biggest sectoral emitters in the European Union, according to the Commission.

Therefore more cost-effective and technically feasible reductions of emissions are required. The adoption today of an implementing act by the Commission brings into effect “Best Available Technique” (BAT) conclusions for large combustion plants.

These are techniques that are environmentally performing, economically viable and technically proven and developed through a transparent and thorough process over several years with EU Member States, industry and environmental NGOs, the Commission said.

For all affected installations (around 3 500 in the EU) the Commission proposes that a review of their permits must happen within four years, so that by mid-2021 stricter EU-wide standards for all large combustion plants will be met. To tackle pollution from large combustion plants is in line with this Commission’s Energy Union priorities to steer the on-going energy transition towards a low emission economy.

The Commission said clean energy transition is a priority for the EC and the ”Clean Energy for all Europeans” package presented last November aims at providing a stable regulatory framework to deliver on the transformation of the energy system, which will be crucial for the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

 

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