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Projects Database

Toxic Reductions Through Energy Efficiency And Conservation Among Industrial Boilers

Project Information

Award Amount:$75,000.00
Dollars Leveraged:$3,947.00
Start-End Dates:9/1/99-9/30/02
Description:Summary: The Delta Institute researched the potential for industrial boiler toxic emission reductions through energy conservation and efficiency measures. Delta engaged with selected industrial sectors that own and operated industrial boilers, sought to determine appropriate incentives for and barriers to investment in energy efficiency technologies and conservation practices, and developed a method to quantify reduction of PTS through energy efficiency and conservation technologies and practices that result in more efficient industrial boilers.

Emissions from industrial boilers are a function of the type and quantity of primary fuel burned in the boiler unit, the type of boiler, and emissions controls. Boilers emit a variety of pollutants including those pollutants associated with combustion processes, such as nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2), particulate matter (PM), and carbon monoxide (CO), as well as air toxics. The primary air toxics include formaldehyde, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), lead, hydrogen chloride, cadmium, mercury, and dioxin/furans (US EPA 1998). Several of the air toxics emitted by industrial boiler units, such as mercury, dioxin/furans, cadmium, PAHs, and 1,4-dichlorobenzene are considered to be Level I and II pollutants of concern under the GLBTS program which was the primary focus of this project.

Environmental Results/Products: The Delta Institute found that optimizing energy needs can result in reduced emissions of potentially toxic substances (PTS), in addition to lowering greenhouse gas emissions because of reduced fuel use. The aggregation analysis showed that industrial boilers are a substantial source of toxic compounds. Even though emissions of PTS emissions from industrial boilers are significant, they are not well inventoried since industrial boiler emissions are often grouped together with the total facility emissions.

An aggregation analysis showed that more than 20,000 industrial boilers are located at facilities in Great Lakes region. This analysis also showed that 12% of the industrial boilers located in the Great Lakes region that use coal and residual fuel oil as the primary fuel emit the majority of PTS emissions. Because of the significance of industrial boilers as a source of air toxics and the potential for reductions through energy efficiency measures, an outreach program was established to encourage industrial facilities to upgrade their existing equipment. The effort focused on coal and residual oil boilers in energy intensive industries in order to take advantage of the reduction potential from this sector. Focusing on coal and residual fired units reduced the target pool of industrial boilers from more than 20,000 to 2,900 located in approximately 1,100 facilities in the Great Lakes region.

The Delta Institute, working with the Council of Industrial Boiler Owners and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources performed energy efficiency assessments at nine Wisconsin facilities, with a total of 34 industrial boilers. Plant-specific energy efficiency recommendations were developed based on the site visit. Primary operations at the participating facilities included:

• Four pulp and paper producers (designated in this report as PVT-1 through 4)
• One manufacturing facility (designated PVT-5); and,
• Four institutional facilities (designated PUB-1 through 4).

Through these assessments, they found that optimizing energy needs can result in reductions of toxic and greenhouse gas emissions because of reduced fuel use. This correlation was also confirmed through the aggregation analysis of emissions from more than 20,000 industrial boilers located at facilities in eight Great Lakes states.


There are no reports associated with this project.

Funding Organizations

Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are funding this project.

U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office - Primary Contact

77 W Jackson Blvd
Chicago, Illinois 60604
There are no individuals in this organization
associated with this project.

Organizations Receiving Funding

Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are receiving funding for this project.

Delta Institute - Primary Contact

53 W Jackson Blvd., Suite 1604
Chicago, Illinois 60604
p: (312) 554-0900
f: (312) 554-0193
Individual Contacts

Associated Organizations

Below is a list of associated organizations that are NOT giving or receiving funding for this project.

American Council for an Energy Efficiency Economy - Partner

1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Suite 801
Washington, District of Columbia 20036
p: (202) 429-8873
f: (202) 429-2248

Council of Industrial Boilers Owners - Partner

6035 Burke Centre Parkway
Suite 360
Burke, Virginia 22015, Virginia 22015
p: 703-250-9042
f: 703-239-9042

U.S. Department of Energy - Partner

Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Environmental Sciences Division
Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6138
p: (423) 574-7857

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources - Partner

101 S. Webster Street, P.O. Box 7921
Madison, Wisconsin 53707
p: 608-267-3125


Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR)
One East Hazelwood Drive Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 333-8940

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