September 26, 2013
NSPS for Oil and Natural Gas Storage Vessels
POSTED BYPatricia A. Mason, P.E.
Engineers at Smith Management Group are prepared to assist our clients in complying with New Source Performance Standards (NSPSs) for the Oil and Natural Gas Sector. Storage tanks used in oil or natural gas production and transmission are subject to EPA’s 2012 NSPS for volatile organic compounds (VOCs) if they have the potential to emit 6 or more tons of VOCs a year. SMG is clarifying with Kentucky’s Division of Air Quality the methodologies which will be approved for the calculation of VOC emissions from storage tanks. Several states have published guidance on the calculation of flash emissions from storage tanks, but Kentucky has not yet published any specific guidance.
For tanks installed between 8/23/11 and 4/12/13, October 15, 2013 is the deadline for determination of whether or not each vessel is subject to the rule. Results of the determination will be included in the January 2014 annual reports. The NSPS requires affected tanks to reduce emissions by utilizing a control device or to document compliance through an alternate method which limits VOC emissions to less than 4 tons per year. Compliance deadlines depend upon the tank installation dates. Tanks installed between 8/23/11 and 4/12/13 must comply by April 15, 2015.
The final rules include the first federal air standards for natural gas wells that are hydraulically fractured, along with requirements for several other sources of pollution in the oil and gas industry that were not previously regulated at the federal level. The NSPSs also addresses natural gas well sites, gathering and boosting stations, gas processing plants, and transmission and compressor stations. For more information visit EPA’s Oil and Natural Gas Air Pollution Standards web page at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/oilandgas/ or contact SMG.