Texas cuts red tape to drive greater growth in CHP

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) in the US has approved a new permit by rule (PBR) for combined heat and power (CHP) systems that is expected to reduce regulatory delays and eliminate certain equipment costs, ultimately encouraging its greater development.

The TCEQ action was in response to legislation passed by the 82nd Texas Legislature and championed by the Texas Combined Heat and Power Initiative (TXCHPI).

It is expected to spur additional CHP usage and further establish Texas as one of the nation's leaders in electricity produced through combined heat and power.

The new PBR recognizes the energy efficiency benefits of CHP and creates a quicker path for attaining air permit compliance for systems up to 15 MW.

A report from the Public Utility Commission of Texas has identified that more than 7000 MW of potential CHP can be economically developed in this size range over the next ten years at commercial and industrial sites such as hospitals, data centres, nursing homes, hotels, chemical manufacturers, paper manufacturers and oil refineries.

Paul Cauduro, executive director for the TXCHPI said: "The new air permit for CHP is a positive step for those that want to reduce energy costs and generate their own reliable and secure power using natural gas engines and turbines.

“This comes at a time when Texas needs CHP now more than ever because these systems reduce strain on the ERCOT grid and provide reductions in power plant air emissions and water use.

“The new permit should help usher in more of this effective, economical and environmentally-sensible energy option for Texas; and create plenty of jobs along the way."

The TXCHPI, in partnership with the International District Energy Association (IDEA), is hosting this year's CHP 2012 Conference & Trade Show, taking place in Houston, TX, 15-17 October. For more information, visit www.chp2012.com

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