Contrary to popular belief, industrial emissions, from things like refineries, mines, power plants, and waste facilities, are actually the smallest source of emissions in Utah. While the eyesore that industrial facilities can be makes them an easy target for public outcry, federal standards heavily regulate every facilities’ emissions. But this doesn’t mean that we can ignore industry emissions. We work with state regulatory offices to ensure that industry is doing all it can to control and lessen its emissions.
Our biggest concerns with industry emissions are industries’ transparency and compliance with federal and state standards. We address these things by reviewing industrial sources with experts, submitting technical comments to regulators, pushing for better transparency, and watchdogging large emitters and their compliance.
TIER 3 FUELS
Tier 3 gasoline is a cleaner form of fuel due to is decreased sulfur content in comparison with normal fuel. Tier 3 gas creates less harmful air emissions than lesser tiered fuels do. In newer vehicles, Tier 3 gasoline can reduce emissions up to 80%, while in older vehicles this fuel can still reduce emissions up to 12%.
In 2017, the gasoline-producing refineries in Utah were given a sales tax exemption in order to incentivize them to produce tier 3 fuel. By the end of 2019, 3 of the 5 refineries in Utah were producing tier 3 fuel. After extending the tax exemption in the 2020 legislative session, 4 of the 5 refineries are either actively producing or have committed to producing tier 3 gas.
HEAL opposes further extensions of this tax exemption for refineries not producing tier 3 fuel. We work to hold these refineries accountable and push to have all refineries in Utah produce this cleaner fuel.
Learn more about tier 3 fuel and where you can get it at tier3gas.org.
SUSTAINABLE INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT & OPERATIONS
Large industrial developments and operations have a serious impact on emissions. While operating industries already face heavy regulation on their operations, going above and beyond those regulations by managing their business in more environmentally and socially responsible ways, can lead to entire community benefits. Incorporating better practices through the lifespan of an industrial facility, from development to clean up, will create permanent, positive changes.
HEAL is developing methods to show Utah-based industries how following sustainable manufacturing principles can both improve emissions and prove to be a smart investment. We are breaking down the OECD Sustainable Manufacturing concepts into digestible action steps that can be applied to industries in Utah. These concepts include inputs (like recycled or reused content), operation (including greenhouse gas intensity, air releases intensity), and products (which consider things like renewable materials content and energy consumption intensity). Learn more about the OECD Sustainable Manufacturing concepts here.