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NJDEP Air Permitting Introduces the GP-009B for Boilers Combusting Natural Gas

Updated: Nov 11, 2020

The NJDEP Division of Air Quality announced a new General Permit (GP-009B) for boiler(s) greater than or equal to 10 MMBTU/hr and less than 50 MMBTU/hr. This General Permit replaced the previous GP-009A for boiler(s) and indirect fired process heater(s) greater than or equal to 10 MMBTU/hr and less than 50 MMBTU/hr combusting gaseous fuel.

Each Boiler currently registered under GP-009A can continue to operate until:

  • The current General Permit expiration date, before which time the permittee must register for authorization under GP-009B, as applicable, or apply for and receive approval for a source-specific permit and certificate for continued operation of the equipment; or

  • Each Boiler replaced or modified, before which time the permittee must register for authorization under GP-009B, as applicable, or apply for and receive approval for a source specific permit and certificate prior to operation of the replaced or modified equipment.

The most significant changes specific to the GP-009B permits are:

  • Natural Gas (NG) and No. 2 Fuel Oil (under specific operating scenarios) are the only fuels that can be used in GP-009B permits. Propane could still be used on existing GP-009A permits in addition to NG and No. 2 Fuel Oil.

  • There is a maximum limit of NG fuel consumption of 840 MMSCF/year for GP-009B permits, that previous versions of this general permit did not have. The purpose of this limit is to control the Potential-to-Emit (PTE) emissions for all boilers registered under this general permit using state of the art emission levels for NOx, CO, and VOC and USEPA AP-42 Emission Factors for TSP, PM-10, PM2.5, SO2 and HAP emissions.

  • There is a specific minimum Stack(s) height above ground for the boiler(s) of 20 feet or greater.

  • The 500 hours yearly limit on No. 2 Fuel Oil consumption was reduced to 48 hours, for just equipment maintenance, testing and personnel training. This yearly limit only can be exceeded under Natural Gas supply shortage or curtailment.

Other items worth highlight are the following:

  • While RADIUS Pre-construction Permits (PCP) are still acceptable for these type of boilers, NJDEP air permit reviewers will advise applicants that the GP-009B is available if applicable equipment is submitted within the traditional RADIUS air permit format. Switching to the GP will reduce the initial agency fee, reduce the 5-year permit renewal fee, and enable an easier permit review process.

  • If varying conditions are sought, that differ from those within GP-009B, then the PCP is still available for new or modified boilers.

  • If there is an existing PCP covering several boilers, and one boiler will be decommissioned, the permittee can maintain the PCP for the remaining boilers provided all permit requirements remain as-is including the potential-to-emit (PTE). This activity can be handled with a Technical Amendment that does not include agency technical review. A reduction in PTE or other technical changes would require a Compliance Plan Change with a full review by an NJDEP air permit reviewer.

  • For GP-009B and all General Permits:

  • When a formal bill is requested (versus paying with a credit card), there can be significant lag time until the permit is recognized by NJDEP since it is reliant on standard USPS mail to/from the applicant and additional processing time at the agency. The payment has to clear in the NJDEP system for the permit status to change from “Pending” to “Approved”. A boiler in service without the “Approved” system status in considered to be in violation.

  • Online payments with a credit card provide an instantaneous permit approval. When the credit card charge is accepted, the permit status will change from “Pending” to “Approved”, and the permit will be emailed to the permittee within one hour.

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