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South Coast AQMD Refinery Committee Hearing on Torrance Refining Co.

On Saturday, April 1, 2017, the South Coast AQMD Refinery Committee held a full-day investigative hearing attended by more than 250 residents and refinery workers, South Coast AQMD Board members questioned numerous experts and listened to community members to help inform the agency’s effort to reduce air pollution and improve safety at the facility.

The hearing was led by South Coast AQMD Refinery Committee Chairman Dr. Clark E. Parker, Sr., Ph.D, and attended by Refinery Committee members Joseph Lyou, Ph.D., and Rolling Hills Estates Council Member Judith Mitchell. Chairman Burke joined the committee as an ad hoc member for the hearing and provided opening comments.

During the hearing South Coast AQMD Board members and attendees heard from local elected officials, representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, California EPA, Bay Area AQMD, South Coast AQMD, PBF Refinery, an independent refinery expert retained by South Coast AQMD, local fire officials, trade unions and the community groups Families Lobbying Against Refinery Exposures and Torrance Refinery Action Alliance.

A full agenda is available online.  Please click on the panelist names below to view their presentations (written presentations were not received by all panelists):  

Elected Officials

State Representatives

Federal Representative

Air Districts

Local Representatives

PBF

Community Perspective

The hearing was recorded by Torrance City Cable and will be broadcast on the Spectrum cable system, Frontier FiOS, and over-the-air digital broadcast KNET 25.2.  It also will be posted on the Torrance Citicable YouTube channel.

The Board also heard testimony from several dozen residents and refinery workers. However, since more than 100 asked to speak, a follow-up hearing was held on Saturday, April 8, 2017, at Torrance City Council Chambers to hear from those who submitted a Request to Speak card, but did not have an opportunity to do so. The agenda is available here.

South Coast AQMD will develop or amend three refinery regulations this year to reduce air pollution in the region, specifically:
- Additional requirements to reduce planned and unplanned flaring;
- Requirements for refineries to monitor air quality at their fence line and/or in the nearby community to better assess potential exposure; and
- A requirement for the two refineries that use modified hydrofluoric acid – Torrance Refining Co. and Valero Wilmington Refinery – to phase out the highly toxic chemical.

For more information, please contact the Public Advisor at 909-396-2432 or by email at PublicAdvisor@aqmd.gov

 

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South Coast Air Quality Management District

21865 Copley Dr, Diamond Bar, CA 91765

909-396-2000

 

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