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Environmental Approval Requirements For Thermal Treatment of Biomass Projects Exploring Small Scale Biomass Fired Organic Rankine Cycle Technology as a.

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Presentation on theme: "Environmental Approval Requirements For Thermal Treatment of Biomass Projects Exploring Small Scale Biomass Fired Organic Rankine Cycle Technology as a."— Presentation transcript:

1 Environmental Approval Requirements For Thermal Treatment of Biomass Projects Exploring Small Scale Biomass Fired Organic Rankine Cycle Technology as a Northern Ontario Energy Solution Confederation College – Thunder Bay – March 13, 2013 Prepared by:Presented by: Mohsen Keyvani, P. Eng. Steven Law, P. Eng. Environmental Approvals BranchStandards Development Branch Ministry of the Environment

2 22 Overview The environmental approval requirements for establishing thermal treatment of biomass projects in Ontario Definition: “Thermal treatment” includes incineration, gasification, pyrolysis or plasma arc treatment (O. Reg. 347)

3 3 Why Environmental Approvals? All thermal treatment of biomass projects requiring approval under Ministry of the Environment’s legislation are carried out in accordance with the acts, applicable regulations, and guidelines administered by the MOE in order to ensure the protection, conservation, and wise management of the natural environment: air, water, and land 3

4 4 Regulatory Framework 4 Policies/Guidelines Acts Authorizing Documents e.g., ECA, PTTW Regulations Powers e.g., orders, inspections Prohibitions & Offences

5 5 Categories of Approval for Thermal Treatment (TT) Projects Environmental Approval for TT Projects Environmental Assessment Act (EAA) Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA) Environmental Protection Act (EPA) O. Reg. 359/09 (REA) O. Reg. 101/07 (Waste Mgmt. Projects) O. Reg. 116/01 (Electricity Projects) O. Reg. 419/05 Reg. 347 O. Reg. 160/99 (Definitions & Exemptions) Electricity Act (EA) O. Reg. 525/98 (Approval Exemptions)

6 6 Environmental Approvals Required for:  A project uses biomass to produce electricity (renewable energy generation facility)


8 8 Renewable Energy Approval (REA)  Renewable Energy Approval (REA) Regulation (O. Reg. 359/09) became law in September 24, 2009.  Streamlined environmental approval process for renewable energy generation projects with a six (6) month service standard  REA is a multimedia approval (i.e. Air, Noise, Waste, Sewage Works, Permit to Take Water (PTTW))  Coordinated approach that provides certainty with respect to provincial environmental requirements and setbacks; ensures transparency and public review  Upfront province coordination on identification of aboriginal communities that province is requiring applicants must to consult (coordinated with MEI, MNR, MOE, MAA)

9 9 REA...Cont’d Definitions (Electricity Act-1998):  “Renewable energy generation facility” is a facility that generates electricity from a renewable energy source  “Renewable energy source” means an energy source that is renewed by natural processes and includes wind, water, biomass, biogas, biofuel, solar energy, ….

10 10  Biomass is defined in Regulation 160 under the Electricity Act, and means organic matter that is derived from a plant or animal, is available on a natural renewable basis and is: grown or harvested for the purpose of being used to generate electricity, waste from harvesting or processing agricultural products or waste from processing forestry products, including spent pulping liquor, woodwaste, agricultural waste, pulp and paper biosolids, organic waste materials from a greenhouse, nursery, garden centre or flower shop, waste from food processing, distribution and preparation operations, such as food packing, food preserving, wine making, cheese making, restaurants and grocery stores, and includes, as an example, organic waste from the treatment of wastewater from facilities where food or feed is processed or prepared, waste from the operation of a sewage works subject to the OWRA, sewage biosolids, or hauled sewage, forest resources made available under a forest management plan approved under the Crown Forest Sustainability Act, 1994 or a managed forest plan approved under the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program; REA...Cont’d

11 11 REA...Cont’d  Renewable energy generation facilities are not subject to the Planning Act, Environmental Assessment Act (EAA), and an Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA) but rather are covered by a Renewable Energy Approval (REA) Regulation O. Reg. 359/09 made under Part V.0.1 of the EPA Note:Guideline A-7 does NOT apply to a renewable energy generation facility because mixed municipal waste is not considered biomass

12 12 When Is REA Required for a Thermal Treatment Facility?  The facility uses biomass  Produces electricity (regardless of sale to the grid or not)  90% or more of the electricity produced from a renewable energy source, if name plate capacity ≤ 500 kW (95% or more, if name plate capacity > 500 kW)

13 13 REA – Exemption The facility prior to September 24, 2009  Collectively: o had a power purchase agreement with the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) o project location met a zoning by-law or order under Part V of the Planning Act o the facility was not subject to the Environmental Assessment Act;  Obtained all environmental approvals and permits; or  A notice of completion in respect of the renewable energy generation facility has been issued or published and the facility has a power purchase agreement with the OPA 13

14 14 Renewable Energy Approval Process EBR Proposal Notice EBR Decision Notice Provincial Review Complete Submission (Ministry accepts application) Specific Requirements (e.g., crown tenure documents issued, building permit process) Approval Process - Service guarantee of 6 months Studies & Consultation municipal consultation public consultation technology specific requirements letters from MNR/MCL and related assessments Studies & Consultation municipal consultation public consultation technology specific requirements letters from MNR/MCL and related assessments Approvals MOE REA MNR permits MTO permits CA permit Appeals Process (6 month maximum) Proponent’s Project Concept Aboriginal Consultation Renewable Energy Facilitation Office

15 15 Thermal Treatment  Class 1 (at any location) Woodwaste only  Class 2 (on-farm) Any biomass not only woodwaste  Class 3 (off-farm) Any biomass not only woodwaste

16 16 Permitted Feedstock for Various Classes of Thermal Treatment Type Thermal Treatment Class 1Class 2Class 3 Location Any whereOn-farmOff-farm Feedstock Biomass Woodwaste SSO

17 17 Project Description Report Construction Plan Report Consultation Report Design and Operations Report Decommissioning Plan Report Noise Study Report Odour Study Report Emission Summary & Dispersion Modeling Report Effluent Management Plan Surface Water Assessment Report Hydrogeological Assessment Report Water Bodies Report Environmental Impact Study All reports and their required content are outlined in the regulation. (O. Reg. 359/09 under the Environmental Protection Act) Most REA projects include five core reports Some projects may require technical reports Preparation of Reports

18 18 Feed-In Tariff (FIT) Thermal Treatment Prices FuelSize Price (¢/kWh) Renewable Biomass ≤ 10 MW13.8 >10 MW13.0

19 19 What Environmental Approval Would be Required If the Project:  Produces electricity using less than 95% (>500 kW) or 90% (≤500 kW) of biomass? OR  Produces energy other than electricity?


21 21 Environmental Assessment Act (EAA)  Waste Management Projects Regulation (O. Reg. 101/07) came into force on March 23, 2007  “Guide to Environmental Assessment Requirements for Waste Management Projects” accompanies the regulation and sets out requirements for the new Environmental Screening Process  Part A – Overview of EA requirements for waste management projects  Part B – Environmental Screening Process

22 22 Waste Management Projects Regulation (O. Reg. 101/07)  According to the regulation, thermal treatment facilities generating energy are subject to the Environmental Screening Process (ESP), rather than an individual environmental assessment An industry (e.g. cement kiln), however, that receives up to 100 tonnes per day of waste as fuel for its own energy needs is exempt from the EAA (i.e. No ESP)

23 23 Waste-based Electricity Projects  Some projects have both waste management and electricity components. O. Reg. 101/07 takes precedence over O. Reg.116/01 (EA Electricity Reg.) O. Reg. 116/01 may apply, where no waste site approval is required under the EPA

24 24 Environmental Screening Process  Environmental Screening Process is a proponent driven, self- assessment process (no Minister or Cabinet approval).  Guide describes required review process, sets out requirements for consultation & identifies documentation needs.  Provides an opportunity to request the Director, EAAB (Environmental Approvals Branch) to elevate the project to an individual EA.  Statement of Completion must be issued prior to issuing approvals under EPA, OWRA or others

25 25 ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION ACT (EPA) & Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA) 25

26 26 Environmental Protection Act (EPA)  Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA) Thermal treatment facilities require an ECA for air and waste under the EPA. The new ECA replaced the previous Certificate of Approval process for air, waste and wastewater proposals as of October 31, 2011. Air Emission Standards Thermal treatment facilities must meet Ontario’s stringent air emission standards under O. Regulation 419/05 (Local Air Quality). Note: Guideline A-7 applies if a thermal treatment facility uses municipal waste to generate energy (energy-from-waste(EFW))

27 27 Ontario Water Resources Act (OWRA)  Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA) Approval would also be required for sewage works (e.g. storm water management, spill containment system for transformer substation, etc.)  Permit to take water (> 50,000 litres per day)

28 28 Thank you Questions?


30 30 Resources Renewable Energy General information on the MOE Website: Technical Guide to Renewable Energy Approvals, available on the Ministry website For Municipal Consultation information and form on the MOE Website : Guide to applying for a renewable energy approval Checklist for Requirements under O. Reg. 359/09 Supplement to Application for Approval of a Renewable Energy Project Guide To Environmental Assessment Requirements For Waste Management Projects Guide To Applying For Approval of Waste Disposal Sites

31 31 Helpful Contacts Environmental Approvals Branch Ministry of the Environment Ph: 1-800-461-6290 (416) 314-8001 Fax: (416) 314-8452 Renewable Energy Facilitation Office Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure Ph: 1-877-440-REFO (7336) (416) 212-6582 Fax: (416) 314-2175 Ontario Power Authority FIT Program call centre Ph: 1-888-387-3403

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