The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) is in the process of developing two new regulations; Regulation 12, Rule 16:  Petroleum Refining Facility Wide Emissions Limits (BAAQMD Rule 12-16), and Regulation 11, Rule 18:  Reduction of Risk from Air Toxic Emissions at Existing Facilities (BAAQMD Rule 11-18).  The purpose of BAAQMD Rule 12-16 would be to place annual caps on criteria pollutant (i.e., particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of less than 2.5 microns [PM2.5], particulate matter with an aerodynamic diameter of less than 10 microns [PM10], Nitrous Oxides [NOx], sulfur dioxide [SO2]), and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from petroleum refineries.  The purpose of BAAQMD Rule 11-18 would be to set toxic air contaminant (TAC) emission caps for existing facilities which are causing the highest health impacts in the BAAQMD, and re-assess these facilities' health risks to the nearby communities.  While BAAQMD is developing Rule 11-18 in an effort to address concerns about health risks to the refinery communities, this will be applicable to all facilities in the BAAQMD that exceed the thresholds established in the rule.

Based on the project description of the draft rules that currently are available for public comment, the following is a summary of the key elements and implications of these rules that are under development.

BAAQMD Rule 12-16
  • Establishes facility-wide emissions limits for criteria pollutant and GHG emissions, at each BAAQMD refinery based on the following method:
    • Each facility emissions limit would be set at the maximum-annual emissions reported for that facility in the period from 2011 through 2015 (except GHGs would be based on 2011 to 2014) including an additional allowance or "threshold factor" that would equal seven percent over the maximum for criteria pollutant and GHG emissions.
  • Emissions from start-up, shut-down, maintenance and malfunction would be subject to the criteria pollutant and GHG emission caps as well.
  • Compliance with the emissions limits would be based on comparing the annual emissions inventory with the facility-wide emissions limit for each pollutant.  Any annual emissions inventory that exceeds the established pollutant emissions limit for the affected facility would be a violation of the rule for the entire year that the inventory covers.
  • By setting an emission cap based on previously reported emissions, refineries will be limited to the same level of production (plus the 7% threshold factor) established during the maximum annual emission period unless strategies are implemented by refineries to reduce emissions below permitted levels.
BAAQMD Rule 11-18
  • The new rule will require BAAQMD to conduct health risk assessments (HRAs) for facilities with a cancer risk prioritization score of 10 or greater or a non-cancer prioritization score of 1.0 or greater.  The HRAs would incorporate the recently updated Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) protocol and health risk values adopted in March 2015, the Risk Management Guidelines adopted in July 2015 by the California Air Resources Board (ARB) and the California Air Pollution Control Officers Association (CAPCOA) and revised BAAQMD HRA guidelines.
  • The rule, as proposed, will be implemented in two phases.  In the first phase, facilities that pose a cancer risk in excess of 25 per million or a chronic or acute hazard index in excess of 2.5 would either have to:
    • Reduce the facility cancer risk below 10 per million and reduce the chronic and acute hazard indices below 1.0; or
    • Install Best Available Control Technology for Toxics (TBACT) on all significant sources of TAC emissions.
  • In the second phase, facilities not already addressed in the first phase that pose a health risk in excess of 10 per million or a chronic or acute hazard index in excess of 1.0 would need to either:
    • Reduce the facility cancer health risk below 10 per million and reduce the chronic and acute hazard indices below 1.0; or
    • Install TBACT on all significant sources of toxic emissions.

More information about the draft rules can be found here.  BAAQMD is requesting comments on the project description of the draft rules as part of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) environmental review.  The deadline for public comments is September 9, 2016.  If you have any questions or concerns on the draft rules, or would like assistance with comment preparation, please contact Trinity's Oakland office at (510) 285-6351, or Melissa Hillman.