Compliance with Minimum Emission Standards Under the Spotlight

Department of Environmental Affairs

An application for postponement of compliance with minimum emission standards must include an air pollution impact assessment.

The environmental affairs department recently briefed parliament on the postponement of compliance with minimum emission standards as contained in the National Environmental Management Air Quality Act.

Other requirements for applications include a detailed justification and reasons for the application and a concluded public participation process.

Should an application be successful, a postponement of the compliance timeframes not exceeding five years can be granted to an existing plant.

Granted postponements can also be reviewed from time to time should air quality conditions in a plant not conform to ambient air quality standards.

In January 2018, meetings were held between Sasol, Eskom and the department to find a sustainable solution for compliance with standards.

The department is planning to put a regulatory tool in place to make postponement a once-off application and thereby eliminate rolling postponements.

The department also indicated that ongoing discussions with industry will take place to find a sustainable solution for compliance.

Sabinet Cape Town Office