Preventing air pollution

Boilers and furnaces

You need a permit for most generators, furnaces and boilers.

Get a permit

The permit you need depends on the type and amount of fuel you’re burning.

Part A(1) environmental permit

You’ll need a Part A(1) environmental permit if your appliances:

  • have an aggregated rated thermal input of 50 megawatts (mw) or more
  • burn waste oil, recovered oil or any fuel made from waste, with a rated thermal input of 3 to 50 mw

Get a Part A(1) permit from:

Part B environmental permit

You’ll need a Part B environmental permit if your appliances:

  • have a rated thermal input of 20 to 50 mw
  • burn waste excluded from the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) with a rated thermal input of 0.4 to 3 mw

Get a Part B permit from:

Small Waste Incineration Plant (SWIP) environmental permit

You’ll need a Small Waste Incineration Plant (SWIP) environmental permit if your appliance can burn either:

  • less than 10 tonnes per day of hazardous waste
  • less than 3 tonnes per hour of non-hazardous waste (equivalent to 72 tonnes per day)

Get a SWIP environmental permit from your local council.

Installing furnaces

Your local council must approve:

  • the use of a new non-domestic furnace in a building, fixed boiler or industrial plant
  • changes to an existing furnace

Contact your local council about getting approval for grit and dust arrestment equipment for your furnace if it’s going to be used to burn:

  • pulverised fuel
  • any other solid matter at a rate of 45.4 kilograms (kg) or more an hour
  • liquid or gaseous matter at a rate equivalent to 366.4 kilowatts (kw) or more

You might not need approval if your boiler won’t create emissions that can damage health or cause a nuisance. Contact your local council to check if you’re exempt.

Chimney height requirements

Your chimney must be high enough to prevent smoke, grit, dust, gases and fume emissions from damaging health or causing a nuisance. Your local council can refuse your application if your chimney isn’t high enough.

You must apply for chimney height approval if your boiler’s fuel consumption either:

  • exceeds 45.4 kg of solid fuel an hour
  • exceeds 366.4 kw of liquid or gas fuel

If your approval application is refused your local council will tell you the minimum chimney height you need.

A chimney may be exempt if it’s used as part of:

  • a temporary replacement, for example if the boiler or furnace is being repaired
  • a temporary source of heat or power for building works
  • an auxiliary plant to bring the main plant up to operating temperatures
  • a mobile source of heat or power for agricultural purposes

If the use of your chimney changes you must re-apply for approval.