Air Credit Trading: Tapping the Pollution Credit Market

Did you know you can trade air pollution credits in Ohio? Not unique to Ohio, this authority exists in many states. Ashtabula Township falls into Ohio EPA’s nonattainment area classification.

The voluntary Ohio ERC Banking Program commenced in January 2009 with the promulgation of OAC Chapter 3745-111.  The Division of Air Pollution Control’s (DAPC) rules establish a voluntary statewide ERC Banking Program that creates a consistent method for generating and transferring ERCs for future use in offsetting emissions in Ohio’s nonattainment areas (PM 2.5 and 8-hour ozone). The ERC Banking System tracks the generation, transfer and use of ERCs for nitrogen oxides (NOx), volatile organic compound (VOC), sulfur dioxide (SO2), fine particulate (PM2.5), carbon monoxide (CO) and lead (Pb).

DAPC created the ERC Banking Program to assist large air pollution sources, or “major” facilities, in obtaining emission offsets for their New Source Review (NSR) requirements. The emission offset rules found in OAC Chapter 3745-31 require any newly constructed or modified “major” source to offset their emission increases with creditable emission reductions from an existing source located in a similar geographical area.

How does the ERC Banking Program work?

As a participant of the ERC Banking Program you must submit a Generation Notification and Deposit Form (ERC Form -1) to Ohio EPA if you believe you have generated creditable emission reductions (ERCs). Ohio EPA will review the information on the Generation Notification and Deposit Form (ERC Form -1) to confirm the completeness and accuracy of the submitted information. Then we will post the amount of ERCs available by verification status (either verified ERCs or un-verified ERCs), by pollutant and by county accompanied with the current owners contact information for the public to view. Another party may contact the current owner of available verified ERCs listed on our webpage to negotiate a transfer (un-verified ERCs may not be transferred under the ERC banking program rules prior to verification by Ohio EPA). Participants in the ERC Banking Program will submit an ERC Transfer Notification (ERC Form – 2) to Ohio EPA when transferring ERCs between two parties. Only the current owner of ERCs may use the ERCs for offsetting emissions during the NSR process.  When you are ready to use verified ERCs for the purpose of offsetting emissions, submit a Use Notification Form (ERC Form -3) to Ohio EPA for review. As a participant in the ERC Banking Program please consult ERC Fact Sheet and OAC Chapter 3745-111 for details on all program requirements.

Read more here.

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