May 16, 2014

New EPA Clean Air Proposals

 The EPA has just announced new rules for emission control standards:  
Proposed Petroleum Refinery Sector Risk and Technology Review and New Source Performance Standards
May 15, 2014 - EPA is proposing additional emission control requirements for storage tanks, flares and coking units at petroleum refineries. EPA is also proposing to require monitoring of air concentrations at the fenceline of refinery facilities to ensure proposed standards are being met and that neighboring communities are not being exposed to unintended emissions.
StateImpact: Pennsylvania has a good article on these new proposals by Katie Colaneri  EPA: new emissions rules for refineries would protect neighboring communities 
After reading the article I found myself left with one question:  Why do we tolerate ANY known release of benzene into our air? 
"According to the EPA, chronic inhalation of benzene can cause serious health problems, including blood disorders and certain cancers."
I applaud the steps of EPA to address the toxic air known to exist around refineries, but it seems that we are still being asked to accept a level of dangerous deadly toxins in the air we breathe in order for a fossil fuel industry to remain profitable.

I don't buy that and feel it is a premise that needs more attention.   

EPA is planning public hearings in  Los Angeles and Houston.  Nothing on the east coast as of yet.  We should encourage EPA Gina McCarthy to hold public hearings in ANY region that is affected by refineries.

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