The Renewables Obligation provides an incentive for the generation of energy from renewable sources. The objective is for more than 15% of UK energy to be supplied from these sources by 2015. Several new biomass power plants burning a variety of fuels are under construction with many more in the design stage. Emissions from these processes will be monitored using the best available measurement technology.
Power generation from Germany’s enormous biogas industry produces emissions to air that are regulated by TA Luft. As part of the approval process, the emissions from each plant have to be tested every 3 years. Formaldehyde is one of the pollutants of greatest concern because of its carcinogenicity and the emission limit is 60 mg/m³. However, the German Government has also created a financial incentive scheme to encourage process managers to lower their formaldehyde emissions to below 40 mg/m³. To be eligible for the scheme, plants must be tested every year.
Formaldehyde (HCHO) can be difficult to measure in hot, wet emissions, not least because it would dissolve in condensate if the sample gas is allowed to cool. Test engineers in Germany have therefore deployed portable (Gasmet DX4000 and CX4000) FTIR analysers to measure formaldehyde and other parameters, and a number of systems are currently in use across Germany.