Youngstown Thermal in Ohio to limit coal use in three boilers

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency on Dec. 28 put out for comment a draft air permit-to-install that would, among other things, limit the coal burn for three boilers at a Youngstown Thermal facility in Youngstown, Ohio.

Youngstown Thermal (YT) currently has a 124.0 MMBtu/hr natural gas-fired boiler (emissions unit B001), two 113.0 MMBtu/hr coal-fired boilers (B002 and B003), and one 110.0 MMBtu/hr coal-fired boiler (B004). The facility also has five “de minimus” units: facility roadways, ash/coal storage piles, coal unloading operations, tipple/silo transfer and storage tank.

In this permit, the company proposed to limit facility-wide hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions to avoid being designated a “Major source” of HAPs and restrict fuel usages for all boilers in order that they officially are designated as “limited-use boilers.” The YT facility is located at 205 North Avenue, Mahoning County, an area designated as “attainment” for all criteria pollutants, such as ozone (2008 8-hour standard), sulfur dioxide, PM2.5, and lead. The facility will not be a “Major Source” for any single HAP and combined total HAPs, based upon the facility-wide emission limitation for combined total HAPs and restriction of total coal combusted in all coal-fired boilers in the facility. Therefore, certain requirements of the Major Source Boiler MACT are not applicable to this facility.

The facility also requested federally enforceable restrictions of annual coal combustion to no more than 3,750 tons in B002 or B003 and 3,550 tons in B004, based upon a rolling 12-month period to be subject to “limited use boiler” requirements.

This federally enforceable permit contains terms and conditions that restrict the facility-wide emissions of combined total HAPs to 9.90 tons per year, based upon a rolling, 12-month period, as well as limitation of 10,000 tons per year of coal combusted in B002, B003, and B004, combined. The permittee will limit each of the coal-fired boilers (B002, B003, and B004) to an average annual capacity factor of no more than 10%.

Said the Youngstown Thermal website: “Youngstown Thermal, LLC owns and operates the steam production facility located at 205 North Avenue in Youngstown which is just west of the central business district. The Plant consists of three 100,000 lb/h field erected coal fired boilers and a 100,000 lb/h natural gas fired boiler which produce steam for the approximately 6 miles of underground pipelines that heat office buildings, retail stores, banks, government buildings, laundries and educational institutions including the Youngstown State University campus. The plant delivers steam through two systems. One steam system operates at 150 psig and the second system operates at 15 psig. The plant also supplies hot water to nearby hot water customers.

“Youngstown Thermal cooling company operates a 1,000 ton absorption chiller adjacent to the west end of the central business district and serves four customers via a 900 foot distribution system that supplies 42 degrees of chilled water in a closed recirculating system. A second chiller, that has a 250 ton capacity, is used in the winter time for winter cooling needs. The steam for the chiller plant comes from waste heat delivered from turbines at the main steam plant. This process is called mechanical cogeneration.

“Youngstown Thermal’s plan is to convert one or more of its boilers to use biomass (waste wood) so that the system becomes more green and has lower fuel costs. Youngstown Thermal has approximately 20 employees within their management, production and distribution staff.”

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.