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Air Quality Regulations

made under Section 112 of the

Environment Act

S.N.S. 1994-95, c. 1

O.I.C. 2005-87 (February 25, 2005, effective March 1, 2005), N.S. Reg. 28/2005

as amended up to O.I.C. 2010-444 (December 7, 2010), N.S. Reg. 187/2010

 

Effective January 1, 2015, these regulations are amended by O.I.C. 2014-469, N.S. Reg. 179/2014.

Click to view a scanned copy of O.I.C. 2014-469 as filed with the Office of the Registrar of Regulations.


Citation

1     These regulations may be cited as the Air Quality Regulations.


Definitions

2     In these regulations,

 

                (a)    “Act” means the Environment Act;

 

                (b)    “Administrator” means a person appointed by the Minister under subsection 21(1) of the Act to administer these regulations, and includes an acting Administrator;

 

                (c)    “averaging period” in Schedule A means that period of time over which an arithmetic mean or geometric mean, as the case may be, is calculated;

 

                (d)    “designated material” means a material described in Schedule B to these regulations;

 

                (e)    “facility” includes a petroleum refinery;

 

                (ea)  “fossil fuel” means a hydrocarbon deposit such as petroleum, coal or natural gas, derived from living matter of a previous geologic time and used for fuel;

Clause 2(ea) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007.

 

                (f)    “heavy fuel oil” means petroleum residual fuel that is used in liquid-fuel-burning equipment;

 

                (fa)   “mercury capture” means the fraction representing the total measured mercury in the substances collected at a coal-fired thermal generating unit through mercury control equipment or mercury control actions, or both, divided by the total measured mercury in the raw coal used in the unit, expressed as a percentage;

Clause 2(fa) added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

 

(g)“Minister” means the Minister of Environment.


Ambient air quality criteria

3     (1)    The criteria for ambient air quality throughout the Province are prescribed in Schedule A and are expressed as maximum permissible ground level concentrations.

 

       (2)    An approval issued by the Minister or an Administrator must contain provisions to ensure that the maximum permissible ground level concentrations prescribed in Schedule A are not exceeded.


Burning offences

4     (1)    Except as provided in subsection (2) and except as provided in the Used Oil Regulations, a person must not carry out, cause, permit or be responsible for the burning of a designated material without prior written authorization from the Minister or an Administrator.

 

       (2)    Subsection (1) does not apply to burning conducted by a person or organization that is authorized by the Province to conduct courses to train fire-fighting personnel.


Gasoline volatility limit

5     (1)    In this Section, “motor gasoline” means gasoline intended for use as motor fuel.

 

       (2)    The volatility limit for the vapour pressure of motor gasoline is 72 kPa.

 

       (3)    During the period from May 15 to September 15 in each year, both dates inclusive,

 

                (a)    a person who refines motor gasoline must not cause or permit any motor gasoline intended for use in the Province to leave the refinery if the motor gasoline’s vapour pressure exceeds the volatility limit; and

 

                (b)    a person who imports into the Province any motor gasoline that has a vapour pressure that exceeds the volatility limit must not cause or permit

 

                         (i)     the transfer of possession of the motor gasoline; or

                         (ii)    the transfer of the motor gasoline from one container to another.

 

       (4)    The vapour pressure of motor gasoline must be determined in accordance with

 

                (a)    procedure D 5191--01 Standard Test Method for Vapor Pressure of Petroleum Products (Mini Method) prepared by the American Society for Testing Materials, as amended from time to time; or

 

                (b)    a procedure approved in writing by the Minister or an Administrator.


Provincial emission cap

6     (1)    The Provincial annual sulphur dioxide emission cap is

 

                (a)    effective April 11, 1995, 189 000 t;

                (b)    effective March 1, 2005, 141 750 t;

                (c)    effective January 1, 2015, 119 070 t;

Clause 6(1)(c) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, 261/2009.

                (d)    effective January 1, 2020, 70 875 t.

Clause 6(1)(d) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, 261/2009.

 

       (2)    A person who owns, operates or is responsible for facilities that release emissions in excess of 90 tonnes of sulphur dioxide per year in the aggregate must, not later than February 15 of each year or as otherwise directed by an Administrator, in a form specified by the Administrator, submit a report to the Minister or an Administrator on the sulphur throughput, noting the fuel usage, sulphur content and corresponding sulphur dioxide emissions for the previous calendar year from each facility owned or operated by, or under the responsibility of, the person.

 

       (3)    Subject to subsection (4), annual sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxide and mercury emission allocations are assigned to persons listed in Schedule C in the amounts set out in that Schedule.

 

       (3A) If persons assigned emission allocations listed in Schedule C transfer ownership of a fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating station, a corresponding portion of the emission allocation and associated monitoring and reporting requirements must be transferred to the new owner in accordance with subsection (3B).

Subsection 6(3A) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007.

 

       (3B) Before ownership of a fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating station is transferred, the apportioning of its emission allocation and associated monitoring and reporting requirements must be approved in writing by the Administrator.

Subsection 6(3B) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007.

 

       (4)    For the purposes of achieving environmental quality standards and objectives in a cost-effective manner, compliance with an annual emission allocation assigned in Schedule C may be achieved by the inclusion of permits or allowances obtained under any emissions trading program established by the Minister under Section 15 of the Act or by an Administrator to whom the Minister has delegated the appropriate authority under Section 17 of the Act.

 

       (5)    If the annual emission allocation assigned in Schedule C for a substance is exceeded, the person responsible must, unless exempted in writing by the Minister because of unusual and unavoidable circumstances,

 

                (a)    within the 3 years following the calendar year in which the excess emissions occurred, compensate for the excess emissions by reducing annual emissions of the substance to a level below the annual allocation assigned for the substance in order to result in a total reduction of emissions of the substance equal to the amount of the excess emissions, in accordance with a plan submitted under clause (b) and approved by the Minister or an Administrator; and

 

                (b)    not later than February 15 of the year following the calendar year in which the excess emissions occurred, submit a plan indicating how the excess emissions will be recovered to the Minister or an Administrator for approval.

 

       (6)    For greater certainty, the annual emission allocation for mercury assigned in Schedule C is not exceeded during the calendar years 2010 to 2013 unless the amount of emissions exceeds the amount permitted by the supplementary emission allocations set out in subsection 3(3) of Schedule C.

Subsection 6(6) added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.


Emission reduction plans for sulphur dioxide emissions

7     (1)    A person who owns, operates or is responsible for facilities that existed in 2001 and that release emissions in excess of 90 tonnes of sulphur dioxide per year in the aggregate must submit to an Administrator an emission reduction plan demonstrating the proposed means to achieve sulphur dioxide emission reductions of 25% from 2001 levels by 2010 for facilities owned or operated by, or under the responsibility of, the person.

 

       (2)    An emission reduction plan must be submitted not later than December 31, 2007, in accordance with specifications issued by the Minister or an Administrator.

Section 7 heading replaced: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.


Emission reduction plan for mercury emissions

7A  (1)    A person assigned annual emission allocations for mercury in Schedule C must submit a mercury emission reduction plan to the Minister or an Administrator on or before March 31, 2011.

 

       (2)    A mercury emission reduction plan must demonstrate the proposed means to comply with both of the following:

 

                (a)    the annual emission allocations for mercury set out in Schedule C;

(b)Section 7C.

 

       (3)    A mercury emission reduction plan must include all of the following:

 

                (a)    a description of the specific mercury control technology proposed for each coal-fired thermal power generating unit in place and state as of October 11, 2006;

 

                (b)    the proposed fuel specification for each coal-fired thermal power generating unit in place and state as of October 11, 2006;

 

                (c)    the rationale for selecting specific mercury control technology and specific fuels and the expected mercury emission reduction associated with their use;

 

                (d)    a description of any other planned actions to reduce mercury emissions and the expected mercury emission reduction associated with the action;

 

                (e)    the estimated costs of actions to be taken under the mercury emission reduction plan;

 

                (f)    a schedule for implementing the actions to be taken under the mercury emission reduction plan.

Section 7A added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.


Report on mercury emissions

7B   (1)    A person assigned annual emission allocations for mercury in Schedule C must submit an annual report to the Minister or an Administrator on or before February 15 of each year.

 

       (2)    An annual report must include all of the following:

 

                (a)    the amount of mercury emitted during the previous calendar year from each coal-fired thermal power generating unit in place and state as of October 11, 2006;

 

                (b)    the mercury capture from each coal-fired thermal power generating unit in place and state as of October 11, 2006;

 

                (c)    the total annual mercury content of coal-combustion residues for each coal-fired thermal power generating station in place and state as of October 11, 2006;

 

                (d)    beginning with the report due on or before February 15, 2011, a description of the mercury control actions implemented during the previous calendar year under the mercury reduction plan submitted under Section 7A.

Section 7B added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.


Compensating for mercury emissions over 65 kg in a calendar year

7C  (1)    In this Section,

 

                (a)    “total excess emissions” means the total of the amounts by which mercury emissions exceed 65 kg in each calendar year beginning with and including 2010 and ending with and including 2013;

 

                (b)    “total reduced emissions” means the total of the amounts by which mercury emissions are below 65 kg in each calendar year beginning with and including 2011 and ending with and including 2020.

 

       (2)    If the annual emissions of mercury exceed 65 kg in any or all of calendar years 2010, 2011, 2012, or 2013, the person responsible must, by December 31, 2020, compensate for the total excess emissions by reducing annual emissions to a level below 65 kg so that total reduced emissions equals or exceeds total excess emissions.

Section 7C added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.


Sulphur content of heavy fuel oil consumed in a facility other than a petroleum refinery

8     (1)    Effective July 1, 2005, the sulphur content of heavy fuel oil consumed in a facility other than a petroleum refinery must not exceed

 

                (a)    2.2% by mass; and

                (b)    2.0% on an annual basis.

 

       (2)    A person who owns, operates or is responsible for a facility that consumes heavy fuel oil must make available to an Administrator, upon request, a report noting fuel type and usage, sulphur content and corresponding average sulphur levels for heavy fuel oil consumed in the previous calendar year at each facility owned or operated by, or under the responsibility of, the person.


Sulphur content of total fuel consumed in a petroleum refinery

9     (1)    Effective July 1, 2005, the sulphur content of the total fuel consumed in a petroleum refinery must not exceed

 

                (a)    2.2% by mass; and

                (b)    2.0% on an annual basis.

 

       (2)    A person who owns, operates or is responsible for a petroleum refinery that consumes heavy fuel oil must make available to an Administrator, upon request, a report noting fuel type and usage, sulphur content and corresponding average sulphur levels for total fuel consumed in the previous calendar year at each refinery owned or operated by, or under the responsibility of, the person.


Reporting and records

10   (1)    A person who is required to report under subsection 8(2) or subsection 9(2) must maintain all records of reported details for 5 years.

 

       (2)    A person who acquires a facility that consumes heavy fuel oil must obtain and maintain the records retained under subsection (1) from the person from whom the facility was transferred.



Schedule A

Maximum Permissible Ground Level Concentrations


Contaminant

Averaging

Period

Maximum Permissible Ground Level Concentration

µg/m3

pphm

Carbon Monoxide (CO)

1 hour

34 600

3000

8 hours

12 700

1100

Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S)

1 hour

42

3

24 hours

8

0.6

Nitrogen Dioxide (N02)

1 hour

400

21

Annual

100

5

Ozone (O3)

1 hour

160

8.2

Sulphur Dioxide

(S02)

1 hour

900

34

24 hours

300

11

Annual

60

2

Total Suspended

Particulate (TSP)

24 hours

120

-

Annual

70*

-

*          - geometric mean

µg/m3  - micrograms per cubic metre

pphm  - parts per hundred million



Schedule B

Designated Materials

 

       (1)    a tire

       (2)    waste dangerous goods as defined in the Dangerous Goods Management

Regulations

       (3)    used oil as defined in the Used Oil Regulations

       (4)    a railway tie or other wood treated with wood preservative

       (5)    a material containing rubber or plastic

       (6)    an asphalt shingle



Schedule C

Annual Sulphur Dioxide, Nitrogen Oxide and Mercury

Emission Allocations for Nova Scotia Power Incorporated


1     Sulphur dioxide

 

       (1)    Commencing in 1995, and in each year thereafter until March 1, 2005, the annual emissions of sulphur dioxide from fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 145 000 t.

 

       (2)    Effective March 1, 2005, and in each calendar year thereafter until December 31, 2009, the annual emissions of sulphur dioxide from fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 108 750 t.

 

       (3)    For the year 2005 only, the annual sulphur dioxide emissions cap allocated under item (2) may be prorated on the basis of the effective date of these regulations, as authorized in writing by the Minister.

 

       (4)    Commencing in 2010, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of sulphur dioxide from fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 72 500 t.

 

       (5)    Commencing in 2015, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of sulphur dioxide from fossil-fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 60 900 t.

Subsection 1(5) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, N.S. Reg. 261/2009.

 

       (6)    Commencing in 2020, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of sulphur dioxide from fossil-fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate 36 250 t.

Subsection 1(6) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, N.S. Reg. 261/2009.

 

2     Nitrogen oxide

 

       (1)    Commencing in 2009, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 21 365 t.

 

       (1A) Commencing in 2015, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from fossil-fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 19 228 t.

Subsection 2(1A) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, N.S. Reg. 261/2009.

 

       (1B) Commencing in 2020, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from fossil-fuel-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 14 955 t.

Subsection 2(1B) added: O.I.C. 2009-342, N.S. Reg. 261/2009.

 

       (2)    Commencing in 2010, and in each calendar year thereafter, a report must be submitted to the Minister or an Administrator noting the nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions for the previous calendar year from each fossil fuel-fired thermal power generating station owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies. The report must be submitted not later than February 15 of each calendar year, or as otherwise directed by an Administrator, in a form specified by the Administrator.


3     Mercury

 

       (1)    Commencing March 1, 2005, and in each calendar year thereafter until December 31, 2009, the annual emissions of mercury from the following coal-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 168 kg:

 

                (a)    Lingan;

                (b)    Point Tupper;

                (c)    Trenton; and

                (d)    Point Aconi.

Schedule C, subsection 3(1) replaced: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007.

 

       (2)    Commencing January 1, 2010, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of mercury from units in place and state as of October 11, 2006, within the coal-fired thermal power generating stations referred to in subsection (1) must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 65 kg.

Schedule C, subsection 3(1A) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007; renumbered 3(2): O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

 

       (3)    Despite subsection (2), the annual emissions of mercury for the calendar years 2010 to 2013 from units in place and state as of October 11, 2006, within the coal-fired thermal power generating stations referred to in subsection (1) may exceed 65 kg by the supplementary annual mercury emission allocations set out in the following table:


Calendar Year

Supplementary Annual Mercury Emission Allocation

2010

45 kg

2011

35 kg

2012

35 kg

2013

20 kg

Subsection 3(3) added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

 

       (4)    Beginning January 1, 2020, and in each calendar year thereafter, the annual emissions of mercury from units in place and state as of October 11, 2006, within the coal-fired thermal power generating stations referred to in subsection (1) must not in any calendar year exceed, in the aggregate, 35 kg.

Subsection 3(4) added: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

 

       (5)    If a unit in place and state as of October 11, 2006, within a coal-fired thermal power generating station referred to in subsection (1) is replaced with equivalent technology or any other steam-generating technology based on coal combustion, the unit must meet the standard for new facilities under the Canada-Wide Standards for Mercury Emissions from Coal-Fired Electric Power Generation Plants, endorsed by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment, October 11, 2006, and is no longer included in the emission allocation of subsection (2).

Schedule C, subsection 3(1B) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007; renumbered 3(5) and amended: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

 

       (6)    Monitoring and testing of mercury emissions from coal-fired thermal power generating stations owned or operated by Nova Scotia Power Incorporated and affiliated companies must be conducted in accordance with a standard prescribed by the Administrator.

Schedule C, subsection 3(1C) added: O.I.C. 2007-505, N.S. Reg. 392/2007; renumbered 3(6): O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.

Schedule C, subsection 3(2) repealed: O.I.C. 2010-444, N.S. Reg. 187/2010.