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BREF stands for “Best Available Techniques Reference (Document)”.  Best Available Techniques, or BAT describes:

“ a document, resulting from the exchange of information organised pursuant to Article 13, drawn up for defined activities and describing, in particular, applied techniques, present emissions and consumption levels, techniques considered for the determination of best available techniques as well as BAT conclusions and any emerging techniques, giving special consideration to the criteria listed in Annex III”  from the IED, the Industrial Emissions Directive  Industrial Emissions Directive 2010/75/EU

In the pursuit of mitigating environmental pollution and ensuring public health and safety, the United Kingdom has implemented stringent regulations governing industrial emissions. Central to this regulatory framework are directives such as the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED), which mandates the adoption of Best Available Techniques (BAT) for industrial processes. Complementing these directives are the BREF (Best Available Techniques Reference) documents, offering guidance on implementing BAT. This text explores how these legislative measures drive the incorporation of activated carbon powder, sodium bicarbonate or lime powders, and urea solution injection into industrial flue gas treatment systems to meet modern emission standards in the UK.

Industrial Emissions Directive (IED): The IED, transposed into UK law, imposes strict emission limits on industrial activities to minimise their environmental impact. It necessitates the implementation of BAT, which represent the most effective techniques for preventing or minimising emissions. For industries with significant flue gas emissions, compliance often involves the integration of advanced flue gas treatment systems.

Best Available Techniques (BAT): BAT encompasses technologies, methodologies, and practices that achieve high environmental performance. Industries subject to the IED are obligated to adopt BAT to limit their emissions. In the context of flue gas treatment, BAT includes various methods such as Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR), Selective Non-Catalytic Reduction (SNCR), ElectroStatic Precipitators (ESP), and Flue Gas Desulfurisation (FGD). These techniques are continuously evolving to meet increasingly stringent emission standards.

BREF Legislation: BREF documents provide industry-specific guidance on implementing BAT. They offer comprehensive insight into the best practices, technologies, and processes available for emission reduction in specific sectors. For industries relying on combustion processes, BREF documents outline strategies for minimising pollutant emissions from flue gases. This guidance aids in the selection and implementation of appropriate emission abatement measures.

Activated Carbon Powder Injection: Activated Carbon Injection (ACI) is a widely adopted technique for controlling mercury emissions from industrial flue gases. Activated carbon has a high affinity for mercury, effectively capturing it from the flue gas stream. This method is particularly relevant for industries such as coal-fired power plants, waste incineration facilities, and cement kilns. ACI systems are integrated into flue gas treatment systems to ensure compliance with mercury emission limits set by the IED.

Sodium Bicarbonate or Lime Powder Injection: Sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) or lime (CaO) powder injection is employed for the removal of acidic pollutants such as sulfur dioxide (SO2) and acidic gases like hydrogen chloride (HCl) and hydrogen fluoride (HF). These powders react with acidic components in the flue gas to form neutral or less harmful compounds. The injection of sodium bicarbonate or lime powders is commonly integrated into flue gas desulfurisation (FGD) systems, which are essential for meeting sulfur emission limits stipulated by regulatory authorities.

Urea Solution Injection: Urea solution injection is a key technique for reducing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from combustion processes. In Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) systems, urea solution (often referred to as diesel exhaust fluid or AdBlue®) is injected into the flue gas stream, where it reacts with NOx in the presence of a catalyst to form harmless nitrogen and water vapor. SCR systems are widely utilised in industries such as power generation, manufacturing, and transportation to achieve NOx emission compliance.

Selective Non-Catalytic Reduction (SNCR) is another crucial technique employed in industrial flue gas treatment systems to mitigate nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions. Unlike SCR, which relies on a catalyst, SNCR involves the direct injection of a reducing agent, such as ammonia or urea solution, into the flue gas stream at high temperatures. Upon contact with the hot gases, the reducing agent reacts with NOx to form nitrogen and water vapor, thereby reducing NOx emissions. SNCR systems offer flexibility and cost-effectiveness, making them particularly suitable for industries with fluctuating operating conditions. By implementing SNCR technology, industries in the UK can achieve significant NOx emission reductions and ensure compliance with stringent regulatory standards, further advancing environmental protection efforts.

The integration of activated carbon powder, sodium bicarbonate or lime powders, and urea solution injection into industrial flue gas treatment systems in the UK exemplifies the commitment to environmental stewardship and regulatory compliance. By adhering to the Industrial Emissions Directive, adopting Best Available Techniques, and leveraging guidance provided by BREF documents, industries effectively mitigate their environmental footprint while contributing to the preservation of air quality and public health.

If your company has a requirement, we have solutions designed and ready to implement.  We are able to respond quickly using multiple suppliers and fabricators to keep your company compliant.

Please get in touch, call us on 01858 419 104 or email [email protected].  We would be pleased to have an informal chat with no obligation to determine whether we can help.

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Our recent Projects

We were contracted to provide 2 small Ceramic filters suitable for a small volume but with a design maximum temperature of 600°C. In addition the filters will be handling a syngas which cannot be mixed with oxygen so an alternative to compressed air would need to be used for the ‘Cleanpulse’ cleaning of the 25 Ceramic element in each of these CPC78 filters. In addition dosing of small amounts of a re-agent is required so the client also opted for a ‘Cleandose’ 25kg bag skid. Find out more about Project CAD below.

Project EE - CleanNOx SNCR System

Project JP2 - Complete Flue Gas Treatment System for Intumescent Paint Furnaces (Phase 2)

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