Your Methodology Handbook for Emissions Quantification

Anyone who's responsible for reporting air emissions from an industrial operation should read this. A step-by-step guide to creating a methodology handbook. By using these instructions for documentation, you'll end up with an emissions report that is more accurate, transparent, and compliant than it would be otherwise.

Sources of data and emission factorsA Guide to Accurate Emissions Reporting

Your handbook is formally called a Quantification Methodology Document (QMD). Everything's spelled out in the guide provided in the 19th Section of the Annual Emissions inventory Report, a.k.a. the AEIR, Standard.

Find out what information you need to include in your QMD, important elements to discuss include your data sources and emission factors to calculation procedures and quality control. Learn how a well-prepared QMD keeps you compliant with regulations by demonstrating consistent calculations which lead to accurate and transparent reporting.

19.0 - Make a Quantification Methodology Document for your facility (See Steps 19a - d)

As part of the AEIR process, clause RC 7-V in the Reporting Chapter of the Air Monitoring Directive requires a Quantification Methodology Document (QMD). It explains how the inventory was compiled, how emissions were measured, and how the AEIR Form was filled out.

Documentation related to environmental reportingCollecting & analyzing emissions data

In the AEIR, the QMD is all about keeping everything organized and well-documented. Sources and substances were inventoried, data was used, assumptions were made, and methods were chosen.

What's the point? It makes sure the emissions inventory is accurate, complete, and consistent. During audits, regulators can use this methodology handbook to understand how emissions were calculated.

In addition, the QMD sets the guidelines for future reporting. If the Director doesn't approve changes, it's like a rulebook to make sure the same methods are used. It's smart to document your work as you go because it makes creating the QMD easier.

The QMD explains how emissions data is collected, calculated, and reported. Environmental reporting needs to be transparent, follow the rules, and maintain consistency.

19.1 Review the Content you need for your Methodology Handbook

Here, we dive into what's needed for a QMD as part of an AEIR (Annual Emissions Inventory Report). Here's how emissions data is gathered, calculated, and reported.

Clause RC 7-W outlines the required content for the QMD methodology handbook:

Emissions reporting recipeEmissions from industry?

Describe how you measured or estimated annual actual, normal, and maximum air emissions for each substance at every emission point.

  • Where did you get your data?
  • Calculate emissions using the emission factors you used.
  • Mention the equations and calculations used to determine emissions.
  • List any reference materials you used.
  • Make a list of all the release points and non-point sources in your industrial operation.
  • Include a map or visual representation showing these release points.

Please describe any changes you made to your measurement equipment, estimation methods, emission factors, equations, or calculations.

Remember to include emission factors in your QMD. To show you're doing it right, you should also provide a sample calculation for each quantification methodology.

As per Clause EIS 19-A (in the AEIR Standard), the QMD cover or title page should have standard identification information. Clause EIS 19-B outlines some other information that should be in the QMD:

  • Substances Schedule 2: Identify Schedule 2 substances applicable to your industrial operation.
  • Classifications and codes not typically used in AEIR: Identify and describe any classifications or codes you used.

Changes authorized by the Director: Document changes in quantification methods or non-standard methods that the Director authorized.

  • What QA/QC procedures did you use and what you found out?
  • Identify missing information and explain how you'll address it in future reports if you couldn't get it.
  • Explain why you combined large point sources and reported them as non-point sources.
  • List any other companies that are related to your industrial operation that weren't on the AEIR.
  • Document your estimation methods if you used them instead of monitoring or measuring data.

Remember to include supporting info too. If you're identifying Schedule 2 substances, you'd explain why you chose them and if significant amounts are emitted.

The QMD covers how you measured emissions, where you got your data, and any deviations from standard methods. Making sure your emissions reporting is accurate and consistent over time is all about transparency.

19.2 - Suggested Format and Content for the Quantification Methodology Document

The purpose here is to create a QMD for the AEIR. This is what it means:

1. Overview of the AEIR program
Report your industrial emissions with this document. It doesn't have to be in a strict format, but it should make sense and provide enough info.

2. Sections that aren't complete
If a section doesn't apply to your case, include it and say it's not relevant. You'll avoid confusion this way.

Keep the area clean with emissions source documentationTaking care of the environment

3. Guidelines for formatting

  • Start with a cover page.
  • Explain what your operation does and what your report covers in Section A.
  • For Section B, Show where your emissions come from on a map, and mention how you monitor them.
  • Explain why you didn't include negligible sources/substances in section C.
  • In Section D, List Schedule 2 substances you use and why they're important.
  • Explain how you calculate annual emissions to complete Section E.
  • Section F is the same as E, but for non-point sources.
  • Section G asks how do you calculate normal emission rates?
  • Explain how you find maximum emission rates in Section H.
    Section I: Document any changes you make to how you calculate emissions if the regulator approves.
  • Document quality control procedures and results in Section J.
  • Section K: Explain any unique classifications or codes you use.
  • If you can't get some information, say so and say what you're going to do about it in Section L.
  • Explain whether large sources are non-point sources in section M.
  • List other companies involved in your operation in Section N.
    In section O, explain when you estimate data instead of measuring it.
  • If you have any extra info about emissions, put it in Section P.
  • Cite all your references in section Q.

Emissions are reported accurately and transparently with this document.

19.3 - After reviewing the content and format, develop the Quantification Methodology Document.

Now that we've talked about what should go in the methodology handbook, let's create it. Keep in mind, the QMD is for one specific industrial operation and should have all the info from AMD Reporting Chapter and AEIR Standard.

Please follow the suggested format and content guidelines. Don't write about other operations or things that don't apply. Make sure it's focused and specific.

19.4 - Perform QA/QC checks and check for common issues

In this step, we'll make sure the QMD is in good shape before submitting it. We need to watch out for these things:

Make sure your emissions calculations are clearPracticing green environmental policies

Emission Factors Missing: The methodology handbook should include all the emission factors.

Uncertain calculations: Make sure it's clear how emission rates were calculated. To understand the process, we need details and examples.

QA/QC Section: The Quality Assurance/Quality Control (QA/QC) section of the QMD should have enough information about the procedures, findings, and corrections.

References: Don't forget to include references to the materials and documents you used.

Mixing up operations: Each QMD should focus on one specific industrial operation. Make it specific.

Make sure all required sections are in the QMD. Here are some QA/QC checks you can do:

  • Make sure all emission factors are listed.
  • Make sure the methodology handbook explains how emission rates were calculated.
  • Make sure the QA/QC section is detailed and well-structured.
  • Make sure there are references and citations.
  • Make sure each QMD is specific to one industry.
  • Make sure all the required sections are there.

We can make sure our QMD is solid before we submit it to the regulator by doing these checks.

Clear Air Reporting: Calvin Consulting Group Ltd. can help!

Do you feel overwhelmed by the Annual Emissions Inventory Report (AEIR)?  You're not the only one.  Industrial facilities in Alberta have strict regulations, and the AEIR process, including the methodology handbook, can be tough.

Here's the good news: Calvin Consulting can help.  Reporting air quality shouldn't be stressful.

Let's say you submit a flawless AEIR and a meticulously crafted QMD.  This time it's with no more scrambling through regulations on your, deciphering technical jargon, or wrestling with math.

That's what makes Calvin Consulting different.  We know AEIR reporting inside and out.  Every step of the way, we'll make sure your QMD is accurate, transparent, and compliant.

Here's what we do:

We'll take care of the whole QMD process, leading you through steps from data gathering to document assembly.  You focus on running your business, and we'll handle your emissions reporting.

Confused about emission factors or having trouble calculating them?  Your report will reflect the most up-to-date regulations with clear explanations.

Enjoy peace of mind knowing your AEIR is in good hands.  During the submission process, we'll double-check everything.

Don't make air quality reporting a hassle.  Get in touch with Calvin Consulting Group Ltd. today!  You can breathe easy knowing your emissions are accurate and efficient.

Get a free consultation by emailing

Barry can put you in touch with our AEIR experts.

At Calvin Consulting...

Clean air is our Passion...Regulatory Compliance is our Business.

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This guide will help you create your Quantification Methodology Document (QMD) to explain your methods.  For a good, transparent emissions report, first learn what data, calculations, and justifications to include.

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