It is common for stationary sources to discharge visible emissions into the atmosphere. EPA has established test methodologies, including Method 9 and Method 22, to characterize the opacity of a plume. These test methods are frequently required by air permits to assess a facility's compliance with opacity standards established by state, and federal air quality regulations. For example, compliance with an applicable PM limit does not necessarily indicate compliance with an opacity limit.

Furthermore, federal opacity standards and some of the SIP opacity regulations vary, which creates the potential for opacity violations if a facility does not clearly understand the extent of these requirements. Therefore, compliance with visible emissions limits and observation requirements is an important aspect of a facility's air compliance strategy. Many Air Permits have compliance requirements to follow the Method 9 procedures, and properly complete Visible Emission Observation forms. Only Method 9 certified observers are qualified to perform these Method 9 observations of stationary emissions.

Continuing our commitment to providing innovative environmental and business solutions for the upcoming year, the Jackson, MS office has extended their ambient field study services to better investigate and analyze visible emission issues and have Method 9-certified staffers capable of performing these tests. If you have any questions about these services, please reach out to Maya Rao at (601) 672-4020.