Ohio EPA Requests Comments on Drafts of General Permits for Compressor Stations

Building on our success protecting the environment and streamlining our permit process for emissions from oil and gas well pad operations, Ohio EPA is now accepting public comments on draft general permits for oil and natural gas mid-stream compressor stations.

Currently, air emissions from these common pieces of equipment are subject to more lengthy case-by-case permits. By contrast, applications for general permits follow a template. These general permits would allow the Agency to ensure it protects the environment and frees up valuable staff resources to work on complex permit issues.

Under the proposal, applicants would be required to demonstrate that the equipment qualifies for a general permit, and agree to meet pre-defined permit terms including installation and/or operating requirements, monitoring, record-keeping and reporting. All of these general permits require the installation of state-of-the-art equipment or methods to control air emissions. Among the common pieces of equipment that would potentially qualify for general permits:

  • natural gas-fired spark ignition compressor engines (five lean burn size choices, five rich burn choices);
  • diesel engines (two size choices);
  • dehydrators (two size choices);
  • flares (one open flare or two enclosed flare choices);
  • compressors;
  • equipment (pipes, valves, flanges, pumps, etc.) that has the potential to leak;
  • liquid storage tanks;
  • truck loading operations; and
  • pigging operations.

In recent years, Ohio has seen a large increase in the number of compressor stations due to the expansion of the oil & gas industry in eastern Ohio. General permits are an effective means to track and regulate air emissions and can be more efficient and timely for processing.

Interested parties may review the general permits drafts at: http://epa.ohio.gov/dapc/genpermit/permitsec.aspx.

Related comments should be submitted prior to May 18, 2016 and may be emailed to: Dana.Thompson@epa.ohio.gov.


The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.

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