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AB 617 Community Air Initiatives

The South Coast Air Quality Management District is conducting extensive community-based efforts that focus on improving air quality and public health in environmental justice communities.

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Meeting

09/24/2020 AT 4:00 PM

AB 617 Community Steering Committee & Charter Working Group Meeting - Eastern Coachella Valley (ECV) - September 24, 2020

Zoom Link: https://scaqmd.zoom.us/s/98534653376
Meeting ID: 985 3465 3376
This is part of a series of meetings for the committee and th....

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Zoom Link: https://scaqmd.zoom.us/s/98534653376
Meeting ID: 985 3465 3376
This is part of a series of meetings for the committee and the public to provide input on the development of the ECV CSC Charter.

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Contact: Public Advisor , (909) 396-2432
publicadvisor@aqmd.gov
Location:
Remote Meeting

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Teleconference Dial In: +1 669 900 6833 Spanish Meeting ID: 937 9466 3910 Passcode 214680 English Meeting ID: 985 3465 3376
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Sep
24
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AB 617 Community Steering Committee & Charter Working Group Meeting - Eastern Coachella Valley (ECV) - September 24, 2020
Meeting
04:00 PM
Remote Meeting


Background

In 2017, Assembly Member Cristina Garcia authored Assembly Bill 617Link to external website.
(AB 617) to address air pollution impacts in environmental justice communities. This program requires local air districts and the state Air Resources Board to reduce air pollution in these most impacted communities. Some additional state bills provided new funding to support this program. This funding helps to reduce air pollution by changing out older trucks and other equipment for newer, cleaner technologies.

South Coast AQMD is committed to making this a community-driven process, including conducting extensive outreach to stakeholders in each stage of this program. A key piece of this outreach includes the formation of Community Steering Committees in each community that is designated for the program.


Community Steering Committees

Please visit the respective links below for updates on each community approved for implementation:  

2018-Designated Communities:

2019-Designated Communities:

  • Southeast Los Angeles (SELA) - includes the cities of South Gate, Bell Gardens, Cudahy, Huntington Park, and the unincorporated Los Angeles County neighborhoods of Florence-Firestone and Walnut Park.

  • Eastern Coachella Valley (ECV) -  includes Coachella, Indio, Mecca, North Shore, Oasis, and Thermal.

General FAQs on the Community Steering Committees are posted below: 


Community Identification & Prioritization Process, Meetings and Documents

South Coast AQMD is hosting a series of meetings to seek input on how to prioritize communities in our region for future air monitoring and emission reduction programs. These pages will contain meeting documents such as presentations, fact sheets, an infographic, community input and South Coast AQMD’s recommendations to CARB:


Forms

Community Steering Committee Interest:

To be considered for a Community Steering Committee, please complete and return a Community Steering Committee Interest Form to AB617@aqmd.gov.


AB 617 Program Components  

AB 617 is a wide-reaching program, and contains many complementary components, including:

  1. Community Plans: Communities may be designated for a Community Emissions Reduction Plan (CERP), a Community Air Monitoring Plan (CAMP), or both. These plans are developed in close collaboration with the community, through the Community Steering Committees. Technical aspects of the plans will be discussed with the AB 617 Technical Advisory Group. Each community plan will be unique, in order to address the community’s top air quality priorities. Plans can use a variety of strategies, including commitments to develop new regulations, focused enforcement, outreach to businesses and the general public, air monitoring projects, and collaborations with community stakeholders and other agencies. 

  2. “BARCT” Implementation: South Coast AQMD must assess technology that helps reduce air pollution and adopt or amend our rules to ensure that Best Available Retrofit Control Technology (BARCT) is required for facilities in the state greenhouse gas cap and trade program. There will be a state clearing house to share the BARCT information from different air districts. 

  3. Emissions Inventory Enhancements: The enhancements include moving towards more uniform statewide reporting of emissions. South Coast AQMD will seek additional sources of funding to cover the added cost of these new requirements. 

  4. Incentive Funding: To support the implementation of AB 617 community plans and to reduce air pollution emissions in disadvantaged communities, the South Coast AQMD is implementing incentive programs to replace older, more polluting equipment with cleaner technologies. Examples of projects that have been funded include replacement of heavy-duty trucks and buses, construction equipment, agricultural equipment, cargo handling equipment, marine vessels and infrastructure needed to support zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles and equipment. More information can be found on the Community Air Protection Program Incentives page.  

  5. Penalty Limits: AB 617 requires increases in civil and criminal penalties for air pollution violations, resulting in the adjustment of strict liability penalty limits that had not been increased for decades.


Community Air Grants

The Districts and CARB are working hand-in-hand to implement AB 617 and improve community air quality. To support this endeavor, CARB is also offering Community Air Grants to community groups for enhancing education and outreach regarding AB 617, monitoring, and improving their air quality. This program allows flexibility for community-based organizations to participate in the AB 617 process and to build their own capacities to become active partners with government to identify, evaluate, and ultimately reduce exposure to harmful air emissions in their communities. For more information visit CARB's Community Air Grants page Link to external website..


Programs of Related Interest

  • CAPP Link to external website.  CARB’s Community Air Protection Program. CARB has established a Community Air Protection Program with statewide strategies to reduce exposure in communities most impacted by air pollution.  CARB has also provided a Community Air Protection Blueprint Link to external website. (Blueprint) that provides guidelines for AB 617 implementation.   

  • CATI – South Coast AQMD’s Community Air Toxics Initiative focused on identifying and reducing sources of hexavalent chromium and other air toxics currently in Paramount and Compton and additional communities in the future.

  • Refinery Monitoring – Under South Coast AQMD’s Rule 1180 and AB 1647, the region’s eight major oil refineries will need to start real-time monitoring for pollutants at their fence lines by 2020. In addition, South Coast AQMD will conduct air monitoring in the communities near these refineries.

  • MATES V – South Coast AQMD has been conducting detailed scientific assessments of the cumulative impacts of air toxics in Southern California communities since the 1990s. The Multiple Air Toxics Exposure Study V is the latest comprehensive study of levels of toxic air pollutants in our region, and includes an advanced monitoring component with a focus on refinery emissions.

  • AQ-SPEC – South Coast AQMD has established the nation’s first comprehensive evaluation center to test commercially available low-cost air quality sensors now being used by community groups, residents and others to gauge air pollution in their neighborhoods.

  • STAR grant – South Coast AQMD is the recipient of a prestigious STAR grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In collaboration with Sonoma TechnologyLink to external website. and the UCLA Fielding School of Public HealthLink to external website., this study will build capacity in six California communities to select, use, and maintain low-cost air pollution sensors and to interpret sensor data.


News Releases

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AB 617 Team
ab617@aqmd.gov
(909) 396-3314
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