Research Projects

Update the Airport Construction Emission Inventory Tool (ACEIT) In Reserve

The objective is to update the guidance and software for calculating airport construction emissions in order to:

• Incorporate the latest construction practices and regulatory requirements.

• Calculate emissions through the latest version of MOVES.

• Integrate applicable modifications to ACRP Report 102 and the Airport Construction Emissions Inventory Tool (ACEIT)

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

In 2014, ACRP Report 102 was published and the ACEIT software released. Since its publication and software release, a number of items have changed, making the report and associated model outdated. The following are some examples of needed research:

• The previous two USEPA models, NONROAD and MOVES, were combined into MOVES (latest version 2014B), which contains emission factors for both non-road construction equipment and on-road vehicles. ACEIT needs to be updated to utilize the emission factors in the latest version of MOVES.
• Construction methods may have changed over the past five (5) years, which could lead to overestimating or underestimating hours of operation for construction equipment and associated emissions.
• Federal and state regulations and Ambient Air Quality Standards have changed over the past five years.
• Technology has advanced, potentially allowing for a new software interface to more efficiently determine construction activities, non-road equipment operating hours, and emissions.

Based on a discussion at the Air Quality Working Group meeting at ACI-NA Annual Conference in September 2019, consultants and airports are using ACEIT to determine construction activities and non-road equipment operating hours. However, USEPA and FAA requires the emission quantification be conducted in the latest version of MOVES. This adds additional time and money to NEPA documentation, emission inventories and General Conformity analyses. By updating the guidance and ACEIT, the software can be improved for efficiency and more representative of emissions resulting from construction.

Approach (Describe in general terms the steps you think are needed to achieve the objective.)

The approach to the research should include, but may not be limited to, the following.

  1. Interviews with airports and consultants using ACEIT to determine the benefits and issues with the current software as well as suggested improvements.
  2. Work with USEPA personnel to incorporate the latest version of MOVES into the model update. During the previous development of ACEIT, USEPA was insistent that users of the software could not modify any the emission factors within the USEPA models.
  3. Research current construction practices and equipment operating times for a variety of construction activities.
  4. Document significant modifications to Federal and state regulations regarding ambient air quality standards, environmental planning documents, and de minimis thresholds for project impacts.
  5. Investigate available software technology to determine the most suitable format for construction emission inventories as a result of this research.
  6. Develop the necessary software for the next version of ACEIT.
  7. Offer beta testing to consultants and airports to verify the construction activities, hours of operation of equipment, and calculated emissions to match real projects throughout the country.
  8. Finalize the ACRP Project Report and the new ACEIT software.
Cost Estimate and Backup (Provide a cost estimate and support for how you arrived at the estimate.)

An estimated cost covering the scope identified in the Approach to the Research, including final ACRP Report and new software is at least $350,000.

The timeframe to conduct the research, develop the software, conduct beta testing, and finalize report and software could range between 2-3 years.

Related Research - List related ACRP and other industry research; describe gaps (see link to Research Roadmaps above), and describe how your idea would address these gaps. This is a critical element of a synthesis topic submission.

ACRP Report 102, Guidance for Estimating Airport Construction Emissions

Idea No. 270