On August 3, 2012, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) promulgated revisions to 310 CMR 7.05: Fuels All Districts that lowered the allowable sulfur content of distillate oil and residual oil  combusted at stationary sources to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions and the formation of fine particle pollution, which affects public health and contributes to regional haze. Effective July 1, 2014, MassDEP regulations at 310 CMR 7.05 limit sulfur to 500 parts per million (ppm) in distillate oil that is being supplied to stationary sources for combustion. See the following documents for additional information:

MassDEP is exercising enforcement discretion until November 1, 2014, to allow retail distillate oil suppliers to sell any existing stocks of noncompliant oil. This Enforcement Discretion supersedes the Reminder that MassDEP issued on May 19, 2014, regarding the low sulfur oil distillate oil requirement.

While bulk wholesale oil terminals in Massachusetts are on track to provide compliant oil by July 1, some amounts of noncompliant oil purchased from bulk suppliers prior to that date will remain in the retail distribution chain after (in on-site storage tanks and tanker trucks, for example). Therefore, MassDEP will exercise enforcement discretion to allow retail suppliers that received noncompliant oil prior to July 1, 2014, to supply that oil to stationary sources until November 1, 2014.  

As of November 1, 2014, only distillate oil that meets the 500 ppm sulfur limit may be supplied to stationary sources. In addition, stationary sources may combust any stocks of higher sulfur distillate oil received prior to November 1, 2014, during this enforcement discretion period, but no shipments of noncompliant distillate oil may be received by stationary sources beginning November 1, 2014.

Questions? Contact Glenn Keith of MassDEP: 617-292-5874 or glenn.keith@state.ma.us