On March 25, 2020, Ohio EPA’s Division of Air Pollution Control announced its promulgation of draft rules that seek to comply with US EPA’s Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) Rule. Enacted in response to its finding that greenhouse gas emissions pose a threat to public health and the environment and must be regulated under the Clean Air Act, US EPA’s ACE rule mandates that states develop enforceable carbon dioxide emission standards of performance for large coal-fired electric generating units (EGUs). (See 84 Federal Register 32520.) These standards of performance are based on the analysis of technologies and methods that US EPA has determined to be the Best System of Emission Reduction (BSER) for reducing emissions of carbon dioxide. The ACE rule allows states the flexibility to consider other factors, such as remaining useful life, cost of compliance and technical feasibility when establishing standards of performance.
Ohio EPA’s new draft rules can be found at Ohio Administrative Code 3745-107-01 to 3745-107-04. The new rules seek to establish a framework for the owners and operators of Ohio’s subject coal-fired electric generating units to follow when conducting their efficiency studies and proposing standards of performance. The rules apply to large coal-fired EGUs having a base load rating greater than 250 MMBtu per hour heat input of coal, either alone or in combination with any other fuel, which Ohio EPA has identified to include seven facilities in the state. Ohio EPA is accepting comments on the draft rules through April 27, 2020.