In Other News:
BOARD APPROVES DEVELOPMENT OF AIR TOXICS REDUCTION PLAN
In a move that will put the Southland well ahead of other urban areas across the nation, the Board approved developing a comprehensive air toxics reduction plan for the region as part of AQMD’s environmental justice initiatives.
The plan will estimate current emissions of toxic compounds and future emissions patterns based upon growth projections, existing and future regulations and expected changes in technology.
AQMD’s plan then will outline an overall strategy to control toxic air pollution from stationary, area and mobile sources. It will include measures that need to be undertaken by the AQMD itself, as well as other levels of government, from cities to the federal Environmental Protection Agency.
The Board acted after hearing from 19 members of the public support the plan, with community representatives urging quick adoption of tough toxic measures, including amendment of Rule 1402, and business representatives urging a more cautious approach.
Measures to reduce emissions of diesel exhaust -- which the state Air Resources Board recently identified as a toxic air pollutant -- are expected to be key elements of the plan. AQMD’s staff told the Board that on average diesel particulate is responsible for about 72% of the risk of cancer from toxic air pollutants in the region, which is about 1,500 in one million, according to the preliminary analysis of a year-long air monitoring program just completed. For further information, see the Board item or contact Jack Broadbent at 909-396-3789.
$25 MILLION APPROVED TO REPLACE HIGHLY POLLUTING DIESELS
The Governing Board took a major step toward cleaning up toxic diesel emissions Friday by approving $25 million in incentive funds to replace more than 800 heavy-duty diesel trucks, buses and other equipment with clean-fueled models.
The Board unanimously approved the following funding to replace heavy-duty diesel equipment:
-$1.1 million from AQMD’s Clean Fuels Program;
-$6.3 million from the state Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality Standards Attainment Program; and
-$17.6 million from the AB2766 Discretionary Fund, administered by the Mobile Source Air Pollution Reduction Review Committee (MSRC).
The three awards represent the largest funding ever in one year for heavy-duty diesel replacement in Southern California.
Businesses, transit agencies, school districts and local government agencies will replace 816 heavy-duty trucks, transit and school buses and forklifts with clean-fueled models running on compressed or liquefied natural gas, propane or electricity. In addition, 26 diesel tugboats and crawler tractors will be retrofitted with cleaner diesel engines. Finally, 22 alternative fuel and electric charging stations will be funded.
The funds pay for all or a portion of the cost difference between a new diesel engine or vehicle and a clean-fueled version and associated infrastructure.
Over the life of the projects – some lasting as long as 20 years – the new vehicles and equipment will reduce more than 8,000 tons of nitrogen oxides, a key ingredient in smog.
Although state regulations in the next several years will require cleaner diesel equipment, existing diesel engines will continue to be used for several more decades. The Moyer and AB2766 programs aim to speed up the introduction of clean-fueled heavy-duty vehicles, which pollute only about half as much as diesel models.
Last month, AQMD’s Board awarded the first Carl Moyer program contracts with $5 million to convert 104 heavy-duty refuse trucks to clean fuels.
For more information, see the Board items on the Moyer
programs or contact AQMD's Technology Advancement Office at 909-396-3253.
$13.5 MILLION AVAILABLE TO REPLACE DIESELS IN FY 1999-2000
AQMD expects to offer up to $13.5 million this fiscal year to help Southland businesses and public agencies reduce diesel emissions from their heavy-duty vehicles and equipment.
The initiative, part of the statewide Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality Standards Attainment Program, aims to speed up the introduction of low-emission heavy-duty engines in trucks, transit and school buses, marine vessels and off-road vehicles such as forklifts and construction equipment.
Alternative-fueled engines, such as those using compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, propane and electricity, will be given the highest priority. Cleaner diesel engines may be considered in some cases. Program funds can be used to help purchase new vehicles, new engines or retrofit existing engines. Some funding also is available for alternative fuel and electric charging stations.
Program funds will be available in the following amounts and categories:
| Vehicle/Equipment Type || Amount (Millions) || Maximum project funding |
($ per ton of nitrogen oxides reduced annually)
| Class 7-8 Trucks |
(vehicles greater than 26,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight such as tractor-trailer rigs)
| $3.0 || $6,000 |
| Class 5-6 Trucks |
(vehicles between 16,001-26,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight such as delivery trucks)
| $1.0 || $8,000 |
|Other trucks* || $1.5 || $10,000 |
| Transit Buses || $1.5 || $12,000 |
| School Buses || $1.0 || $12,000 |
| Marine Vessels || $1.5 || $2,000 |
| Forklifts || $1.5 || $3,000 |
| Construction, agricultural and ground support equipment || $1.5 || $12,000 |
| Fueling stations/Electric chargers || $1.0 || |
| TOTAL || $13.5 || |
| || || |
*Fleets of 20 or less heavy-duty vehicles, public sector vehicles and diesel-to-diesel engine replacements
Applications for all vehicles are due by 5 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2000.
For more information, or to schedule a briefing for your industry group, see the Board item
or call AQMD’s Technology Implementation program at 909-396-3253.
BOARD APPROVES STANDARDS FOR CLEANER STREET SWEEPERS
The Governing Board adopted standards and testing procedures for certified street sweepers that will reduce the region’s airborne particulate matter. Road dust lofted into the air by vehicles is a significant source of PM10, which is linked to a variety of adverse health effects from increased hospitalizations to shortened life spans.
Under AQMD’s Rule 1186
(PDF, 43kb), originally adopted in February 1997, cities must purchase, lease or contract for sweepers certified as PM10-efficient after Jan. 1, 2000, whenever they replace existing sweepers or sweeping services.
Certified sweepers generally use air or vacuum systems to collect material and have a variety of dust suppression systems to reduce the amount of dust generated during street sweeping activities. Conventional street sweepers can raise large dust plumes, potentially creating a neighborhood nuisance.
This spring, an independent laboratory under contract to the AQMD tested more than 15 sweepers at the California Speedway in Fontana using a new protocol developed by AQMD staff and the sweeper manufacturers.
The Board’s action requires that certified sweepers pick up at least 80% of material on a roadway and emit to the air no more than 200 milligrams of PM10 per meter traveled. Street sweepers must be certified by an AQMD-approved independent laboratory.
Certified sweepers may cost more than traditional mechanical broom sweepers. Funding for the cost difference may be available to local governments through the AB2766 subvention program.
These sweeper standards help implement a Best Available Control Measure for entrained road dust, which is projected to reduce PM10 emissions by 13.1 tons per day by the year 2006. For more information, see the Board item or call Julia Lester at 909-396-3162.
RULE CHANGES FOR PRINTERS, SOLVENT USE SET FOR OCTOBER
The Board set public hearings for October 8 on amendments to tighten AQMD rules covering solvent cleaning operations and printers.
Proposed amendments to Rule 1171 – Solvent Cleaning Operations would cut daily VOC emissions by 15 tons when fully effective, by reducing the allowable VOC content for cleaning solvents used in product cleaning and surface preparation, repair and maintenance cleaning, cleaning coating and adhesive application equipment, and cleaning ink application equipment. The reduction in VOCs would be required in two steps, the first in 2002 and the second in 2005. For further information, see the Board item or contact Jack Broadbent at 909-396-3789.
The proposed changes to Rule 1130 – Graphic Arts would reduce daily emissions of volatile organic compounds in the region by about a fifth of a ton by lowering the allowable level of VOCs in a variety of materials used by printers, as well requiring higher efficiency for pollution control systems. For further information, see the Board item or contact Elaine Chang at 909-396-3186.
MSRC’S $20.4 MILLION WORK PROGRAM MOVES FORWARD
The Board adopted the Mobile Source Emission Reduction Review Committee’s $20.4 million program for 1999-2000 including:
- $17.6 million for heavy-duty vehicles, detailed above;
- $409,131 for transportation control measures;
- $2 million to help fund 400 electric vehicles for the U.S. Postal Service in Carson, Covina, El Monte, Glendora, La Mirada, Los Angeles, San Gabriel and Pico Rivera;
- $200,000 for a neighborhood electric vehicle project; and
The Board approved all other items on the agenda.
- $150,000 for public outreach.
In Other News
SUMMER SMOG SEASON CLEANEST IN MODERN HISTORY
The air in the Southland this year has been the cleanest since smog became a public concern in the 1940s. Through Sept. 9, for the first time ever, the region has not experienced a Stage 1 Episode for ozone.
Ten years ago in 1989 the area experienced 54 Stage 1 Episodes and twenty years ago in 1979 the region had 120 Stage 1 Episodes. These are days on which ozone hits 200 or higher on the Pollutant Standards Index and AQMD advises everybody to avoid vigorous outdoor exercise and susceptible people, especially those with heart or lung disease, to stay indoors. Last year, there were 12 Stage 1 Episodes and in 1997 one.
In addition, the region this year has had only 12 state Health Advisory days for ozone, compared to a total of 43 in 1998 and 28 in 1997. At this lower level of ozone – between 138 and 200 PSI -- AQMD advises everybody to avoid prolonged vigorous outdoor exercise and susceptible people to avoid outdoor activity. The region had just 43 days above the one-hour federal standard for ozone, which is 100 PSI. This is down from a total of 62 days in 1998 and 68 in 1997.
While there still may be a few days above the federal standard in the next month, Stage 1 Episodes and Health Advisory days are highly unlikely as the sun becomes lower in the sky and the ultraviolet light needed to form ozone diminishes with the coming of Fall.
The improved air quality this year is part of a long-term trend toward cleaner air growing out of local and state efforts to reduce air pollution.
TOWN HALL MEETING SET FOR INGLEWOOD ON SEPT. 22
AQMD will hold its next town hall meeting in Inglewood at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 22, at Inglewood City Hall, Community Room A, 1 Manchester Ave., Inglewood. The meeting will allow residents of the area to share their air quality concerns with top AQMD staff. In addition, AQMD will report the findings of an air monitoring study conducted last May in the cities of Inglewood, Westchester and El Segundo and will respond to concerns about emissions from the Los Angeles International Airport.
For further information, contact Natalia Porche at 909-396-3218.
AQMD ADDS KEYWORD INDEX TO WEB SITE
AQMD has installed an enhanced and expanded keyword index on its web site at http://www.aqmd.gov/rules/keyw.html. The index assists users in identifying and contacting the individuals directly responsible for the regulations and policies for which they are seeking information.