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Kraft Pulp Mills: New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) - 40 CFR 60, Subparts BB & BBa

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Rule Summary

Kraft pulp mills are facilities that convert wood into pulp through a chemical process known as the kraft process. Wood chips are treated with a mixture of sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide and cooked under high pressure to disintegrate the chips into smaller fibers. The resulting pulp is used to make paper products.

The original New Source Performance Standard for this sector was promulgated in 1976 and was reviewed in 2014.

As a result of the review, a new subpart BBa was implemented for sources for which construction, reconstruction, or modification commenced after May 23, 2013. Through these actions, the EPA identified particulate matter (PM) and total reduced sulfur compounds (TRS) as the criteria air pollutants emitted in the largest quantity. This regulation has numeric limitations on PM and TRS from each of the three combustion unit types (i.e., recovery furnace, lime kiln, and smelt dissolving tank).

See the regulations in the section below for more details.  

Rule History

10/22/2019 - Proposed Amendments

04/04/2014 – Final Rule (subpart BBa)

05/23/2013 – Proposed Rule (subpart BBa)

05/20/1986 – Final Rule (subpart BB)

02/14/1985 – Final Rule (For 09/06/1984 Proposed Rulemaking - subpart BB)

09/06/1984 – Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (subpart BB)

01/19/1984 – Review and Proposed Rule (For the 1986 Final Rule - subpart BB)

02/23/1978 – Final Rule (subpart BB)

09/24/1976 – Proposed Rule (subpart BB)

Additional Resources

Fact Sheet:  Proposed Amendments to Air Toxics Standards for the Chemical Recovery Combustion Sources and the Kraft Pulp Mill New Source Performance Standards

WATER9 is a Windows based computer program for estimating air emissions of individual waste constituents in wastewater/waste. Further information or a copy of the WATER 9 can be obtained from EPA. You can also contact the Air Emissions Model Hotline at (919) 541-5610 for support or more information about this model.

Pulp and paper manufacturing is subject to the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. Information regarding available and emerging technologies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from pulp and paper manufacturing can be found here.

View the supporting documents in the docket folder to find additional related documents to this rule.

Related Rules

MACT I & III Pulp and Paper Regulations

MACT II Pulp and Paper Regulations

Pulp, Paper, and Paper Board Point Source Category Effluent Guidelines and Standards


Applicability Determination Index (ADI).  The ADI is maintained by EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) and provides a data base of memoranda dealing with applicability issues.  The database is searchable by Subpart.