Public discussion about emissions permits for ORL factories, May 16, 2016 Photo: Jorge Novominsky
The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MoEP) will be putting in place more stringent conditions for Carmel Olefins and Gadiv Petrochemicals factories. This will result in a reduction of air pollution from the factories, and an improvement in Haifa’s air quality. MoEP representatives presented the new conditions to Haifa residents and environmental organization representatives, at a public discussion regarding the companies’ emissions permits, on Monday evening, May 16, 2016. Both Carmel Olefins and Gadiv are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Oil Refineries Ltd.
Carmel Olefins Photo: Ilan Malester
The new conditions are based on Best Available Techniques (BATs) and strict European Union standards. They are set out in the companies’ emissions permits, and receipt of the permits is dependent on the companies’ compliance.
The new conditions include:
- Limiting the amount of time factories have to repair a temporary glitch in their facilities;
- Limiting the maximum concentration permitted to be emitted from in smokestacks.
- Making stricter requirements related to storage tanks where chemicals or other hazardous materials are stored. For example, tanks storing benzene are now required to be connected to emissions reduction treatment facilities, in addition to existing reduction measures.
- Inspectors will increase sampling at Carmel Olefins.
- Operational instructions have been updated in accordance with current regulations of the US Environmental Protection Agency. These are aimed at ensuring that the torch that is activated in case of an emergency in order to prevent uncontrolled emissions to the air, will also ensure complete combustion of the gases flowing into it. (In case of incomplete combustion, smoke emissions from torches will be limited to 5 minutes every two hours, and factories will be obligated to report any incident of black smoke, to record such incidents, and to preserve the photos for MoEP use.)
Carmel Olefins, Gadiv, and other large factories must receive emissions permits, in accordance with the 2008 Clean Air Law. The MoEP will publish the new conditions for the companies’ emissions permits by early June. They will take effect from that day, and will remain in effect for the next seven years.