On Jan.12, 2011, the EPA announced its plan to defer for three years greenhouse gas (GHG) permitting requirements for CO2 emissions from biomass-fired and other biogenic sources. The agency stated that it intends to use the additional time to seek further independent scientific analysis of this complex issue and then to develop a rulemaking on how these emissions should be treated in determining whether a Clean Air Act permit is required. By July 2011
, the EPA intends to complete a rulemaking that will defer permitting requirements for CO2 emissions from biomass-fired and other biogenic sources for three years. During the three-year period, the agency will seek input on scientific issues from its partners within the federal government and from outside scientists who have relevant expertise. Before the end of the three-year period, the EPA intends to issue a second rulemaking that determines how these emissions should be treated or counted under GHG permitting requirements.
The EPA stated that it intends to issue guidance that will provide a basis that state or local permitting authorities may use to conclude that the use of biomass as fuel is the best available control technology for GHG emissions until the agency can complete action on the three-year deferral in July. More information is available online