On January 1, 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will, for the first time, require large emitters of heat-trapping emissions to begin collecting greenhouse gas (GHG) data under a new reporting system. This new program will cover approximately 85% of the nation’s GHG emissions and apply to roughly 10,000 facilities.
According to the EPA, its new reporting system will provide a better understanding of where GHGs are coming from and will guide the development of the best policies and programs to reduce emissions. The data will also allow businesses to track their own emissions, compare them to similar facilities, and provide assistance in identifying cost-effective ways to reduce emissions in the future.
Greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide (CO2) are produced by burning fossil fuels and through industrial and biological processes. Fossil fuel and industrial GHG suppliers, motor vehicle and engine manufacturers, and facilities that emit 25,000 metric tons or more of CO2 equivalent per year will be required to report GHG emissions data to the EPA annually.
The first annual reports for the largest emitting facilities, covering calendar year 2010, will be submitted to the EPA in 2011. Vehicle and engine manufacturers outside of the light-duty sector will begin phasing in GHG reporting with model year 2011. Some source categories included in the proposed rule are still under review.
For additional details on the new reporting system and requirements, visit www.epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/ghgrulemaking.html