Torrance Refinery - Air Monitoring

South Coast AQMD conducted an air monitoring assessment during the startup processes of the Torrance Refinery FCCU to assess pollutants of primary concern in areas near the refinery.

Air Monitoring Related to FCCU startup

South Coast AQMD conducted an air monitoring assessment during the startup processes of the Torrance Refinery FCCU on September 23, 2016 using a combination of measurement methods to assess pollutants of primary concern (PM, H2S, HCN, Benzene and other pollutants) in the adjacent areas of the facility and downwind.  Measurement efforts focused on near real-time continuous monitors for gradient measurements.  The survey field measurements (PM, H2S, HCN, and benzene) showed levels that did not exceed health protective thresholds for short term exposures. 

Four canister samples were also collected for a more thorough laboratory analysis during the startup event (see Table below). Analysis using EPA Method TO-15 for air toxics was performed on these samples and, overall, the results are within the expected range for the South Coast Basin. One of the four samples (# 1627009-02) detected the presence of acetonitrile at a concentration of 0.67 µg/m3; acetonitrile was not detected in the other three samples. The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment currently does not have an established Reference Exposure Level for either short-term nor long-term exposure to acetonitrile in ambient air. However, for long-term exposures to acetonitrile, the U.S. EPA established a Reference Concentration for this compound (RfC = 60 µg/m3), meaning that continuous exposures to acetonitrile at levels below the RfC over a lifetime would likely be without an appreciable risk of adverse health effects.

Lab ID*

Sample Location



W. 190th St. & Crenshaw Blvd.

09/23/16 14:12


Haas Ave/W 190th St

09/23/16 15:14


Ermanita/98th Ave (Background)

09/23/16 10:54


Crenshaw – West of Flare

09/23/16 12:55

*Click on the Lab IDs to view the analysis results 

On September 26, 2016, two monitors were deployed for temporary monitoring of particulate matter (both PM2.5 and PM10) and the results are published at  (NOTE: select the ExxonMobil monitoring sites from the Monitoring Sites drop-down in the upper right corner of the screen to view the results).

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