In May 2018, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) published a concept paper and supporting scoping papers discussing the District's plan to implement Best Available Retrofit Control Technology (BARCT) on emission sources in the Bay Area pursuant to the requirements of Assembly Bill (AB) 617. Approved by Governor Brown on July 26, 2017, AB 617 requires each California air district in nonattainment of one or more air quality standards to adopt an expedited BARCT implementation schedule by January 1, 2019, in order to reduce criteria pollutant emissions from sources currently participating in the state's Cap-and-Trade program. The Bay Area air basin is considered a nonattainment area for ozone and particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5). As such, the BAAQMD's BARCT plan targets sources of particulate matter, ozone precursor pollutants such as nitrogen oxides (NOx) and reactive organic compounds (ROG), as well as the particulate matter precursor pollutant sulfur dioxide (SO2). While AB 617 directs air districts to implement BARCT for sources subject to the Cap-and-Trade program, BAAQMD has indicated in its concept paper that sources outside of the Cap-and-Trade program may also be subject to the District BARCT rules under development. The BAAQMD has identified nine source types for expedited BARCT implementation, listed below in chronological order for proposed rule development.

  • Organic Liquid Storage Tanks
  • Petroleum Wastewater Treating
  • Portland Cement Manufacturing
  • Refinery Fluid Catalytic Crackers and CO Boilers
  • Fiberglass Manufacturing
  • Refinery Heavy Liquid Leaks
  • Internal Combustion (Reciprocating) Engines
  • Municipal Solid Waste Landfills
  • Petroleum Coke Calcining

For each of the nine source types listed above, the BAAQMD has published a scoping paper discussing the technical background, the potential scale of emission reductions, the cost effectiveness of emission reductions, and possible control technology options. Rule development under  the AB 617 Expedited BARCT Implementation Schedule is proposed to begin in June 2018 and extend through early 2021, with development of each rule taking approximately 12 months from initiation to adoption. Readers can stay up to date on the BAAQMD's BARCT implementation by visiting the District's website.