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How to Determine the Right Air Permitting Authorization Mechanism for Your Facility

Your facility needs an air authorization, but you’re unsure of how to proceed. It is feasible to make the permitting process smooth and efficient, along with ensuring your project meets your flexibility, monetary, and temporal requirements to run your business as your goals dictate. You can do this by providing all your business goal criteria and project specifics at project permitting commencement.

The What’s of Emission Sources:

What type of source do you have?

The first step is to really understand what type of sources you plan to construct. How does the process flow? What equipment is needed including anything that combusts a fuel, uses chemicals, creates dust, and utilizes control devices such as flares or dust collectors? Understanding the fundamentals of the project is critical to determining an authorization pathway in many states and to completing the next step: emission calculations.

What are your projected emissions?

Based on data provided on source type and process flow, calculations should be performed to determine emission levels. The type of information needed will depend on the source, but below is an example list of information needed to perform calculations for various sources:

  • Hours of operation of the source
  • Maximum and average material usage on time or unit value based on operational and/or manufacturer information
  • Maximum and average operational rate on time or unit value based on operational and/or manufacturer information
  • Equipment heat input rating
  • Equipment power rating
  • Safety data sheets for materials used
  • Analytical reports or source test data if available

Once the emission levels are determined, they are evaluated against authorization types and the attainment status of the county for which your project resides.

What authorization do you fit in?

Utilizing your source type evaluation along with your emissions calculations, you can determine which authorization mechanism to use with your permitting authority. This evaluation should be based on both source type and emissions from each source and site as a whole.  For smaller operations and sources, start with the exemptions. For example, Texas has de minimis usage rates and a de minimilist. If your site or source is on this list, that may be your authorization mechanism. Is there a way to meet the simplest authorization mechanism?

Great! Now you have determined your authorization mechanism.  But, you’re not done yet! All the above analyses need to be compiled and documented in some fashion utilizing your regulatory authority’s guidance, forms, and online systems. Even then there are more methods to present this information to authorize your project for construction.

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If you have any questions regarding air permitting or emissions, please give us a call or click the link below to fill out our Contact Us form.