CHEVY CHASE, MD — The South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) of Southern California has announced new UV/EB technology listings for its Best Available Control Technology Guidelines (BACT). BACT is a pollution control standard mandated by the Clean Air Act that applies to any new or modified source.
The SCAQMD is working to update its BACT listings, with encouragement from RadTech, to better reflect the fast growing pace of UV/EB technology. Rita Loof, RadTech’s, Director of Environmental Affairs, testified at SCAQMD committee hearings, pointing out that other California air districts such as Bay Area and San Joaquin have updated their guidelines, which included super-compliant materials and specifically UV coatings as alternatives to add-on controls. “Our technology is a pollution prevention technology and should be recognized as an alternative to add-on control devices in the guidelines,” said Loof at a meeting of the District’s Board. Several SCAQMD Board members expressed support for UV/EB technology, indicating they believed it is “very clean.” In 2017, the Board unanimously supported a motion by Governor appointee Joe Lyou to adopt the following resolution language: “BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Board directs AQMD staff to work with industry and other stakeholders on assessing Ultraviolet/ Electron Beam (UV/EB) technology as an alternative to meet Best Available Control Technology.”
The Board’s resolution catalyzed the BACT update efforts, and several UV/EB processes were included last year, including for a wood coatings operation (cabinets) and also for a flat line glass coating operation. The latter is especially significant as the first BACT for glass coatings, making this a ground-breaking listing.
SCAQMD staff has also reported that they recently visited the UV/EB facilities, which reported being extremely happy with the technology. In addition, there is a stringent cost effectiveness for these listings, pointing to the financial benefits of UV/EB.
These BACT decisions do not preclude other processes such as waterborne operations or solvent operations with add-on controls (afterburners) but rather recognizes UV/EB can be viable complaint option. The proposal was finalized on Feb. 8, 2021, when the SCAQMD Board unanimously approved the new BACT listings for UV/EB technology. Specifically, the two categories are: Glass Screen Printing – Flat Glass (page 7 of staff report) and Enclosure with Automated Spray Nozzles for Wood Cabinets (page 10 of staff report).
To access the full staff report, visit Determine That Proposed Amendments to BACT Guidelines Are Exempt from CEQA and Amend BACT Guidelines (aqmd.gov).