What Is Stack Emissions Testing?
Stack emissions testing (stack sampling or stack monitoring) is the experimental process for evaluating the characteristics of waste gas stream emissions into the atmosphere from industrial facilities to meet environmental standards.
Stack testing measures the amount of specific regulated pollutants or surrogates being emitted or determines the destruction or removal efficiency of a control device used to reduce emissions at facilities. Stack monitoring is an important tool used to determine a facility’s compliance with regulated emission limits.
Why Is Stack Emissions Testing Important?
Stack testing is routinely undertaken for many different reasons. Most commonly stack emissions testing is undertaken to demonstrate compliance against limits outlined for permitted processes. Current legislation under which a process might be permitted includes the Environmental Permitting Regulations (2010) and the Industrial Emissions Directive (2010).
To satisfy the Environmental Permitting Regulations, those who carry out the above industrial processes are required to report the stack emissions released from their facility into the atmosphere on a periodic basis.
Who Requires Stack Emissions Testing?
Stack monitoring is necessary and the standards in the UK can be very strict.
The requirement for stack emissions testing is determined based on potential environmental impacts from a business. The higher the emissions the more meticulous the requirements for monitoring.
When Is Stack Emissions Testing Needed?
Stack testing is required either on an annual basis or sometimes need to be monitored continuously over a 24-hour period depending on the scale of emissions being emitted.
OSS Enviro regulates any high emitting Part A processors and the relevant Local Authority regulate lower emitting Part B processors. These requirements should be documented within each site’s permit. Either of these regulators will determine how often stack emissions testing should be undertaken.
Who Can Officially Carry Out Stack Emissions Testing?
Stack testing is a specialist job and it can only be completed by a very limited number of companies in the UK. These select few companies are recognised by the Environment Agency as having the proper training, quality, management systems and experience to monitor emissions. These companies are equipped with the specialist equipment needed to sample the emissions for analysis either on site or in their laboratory.
For Part A processors regulated by the Environment Agency, MCERTS accreditation is required in order to carry out stack emissions testing. For smaller Part B processors such accreditation is not required however is looked upon highly by Local Authorities due to the expertise and guidelines of such monitoring.