Analysis

IPC bites in electricity sector - but BATNEEC takes a back seat

Five years after power stations came under integrated pollution control (IPC), HM Inspectorate of Pollution (HMIP) has announced future emission limits for coal- and oil-fired power stations in England and Wales which should ensure easy compliance with the UK's international commitments to curb sulphur dioxide. The limits will be met mainly by the continuing move to gas-fired generation rather than further retrofits of flue gas desulphurisation (FGD) equipment - but the balance struck by HMIP in determining the "best available techniques not entailing excessive cost" (BATNEEC) remains obscure. HMIP has also required National Power and PowerGen to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides and particulates and the impact of stations on local air quality.

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