The Turow Electric Power Station in Bogatynia, Poland. Photo: © canon_photographer /

Excess pollution from large combustion plants

From 16 August, EU governments are required to comply with the revised best available techniques reference document for large combustion plants, known as the LCP BREF. But according to the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), complacent national regulators have chosen to set the highest permissible emission levels for nitrogen oxides, sulphur dioxide, mercury and particulate matter allowed in the LCP BREF, even though industry players considered the lowest – and therefore most ambitious – levels to be “economically and technically viable” when it was agreed back in 2017.

The EEB has called on member state authorities to “stop agreeing derogations ‘on demand’ and use their power to enforce the most ambitious BREF limits”. For its part, the European Commission should aim to raise those limits in revised best available technique conclusions due some time before January next year, as well as in its review of the Industrial Emissions Directive and in its regulation implementing the UN Minamata Convention on mercury, it added. Moreover, reporting rules should be overhauled “to enable centralised EU benchmarking and compliance promotion”, the EEB said.

Sources: ENDS Europe Daily and EEB press briefing, 17 Aug 2021.



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