This group of dedicated activists analyze and respond to the regulatory actions of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. Because lobbying at Air District public meetings is critical, this coalition is eager to recruit others ready to acquaint themselves with the complexities of regulation and to voice our concerns in the public forum.
BAAQMD regulates all stationary sources, not just refineries. Commercial and residential buildings, industrial sites, gas stations, and much more fall within the regulatory domain of the District. But our primary focus, at least during this time when the air district is developing new refinery regulations, is on refinery emissions.
Until now the Air District has been reluctant to directly regulate greenhouse gasses (primarily methane, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide). Instead it has deferred to the state regulatory agency, the California Air Resources Board. CARB is enacting the provisions of AB32, in particular. However, thanks in part to pressure put on the BAAQMD’s board of directors by ourselves and other environmental groups, the District is taking steps toward direct regulation of GHGs from refineries in our region.
But will they be baby steps or robust and comprehensive measures that the urgency of the situation demands? Stay tuned.
For a good overview of BAAQMD's work, air pollutants and their health impacts, and proposed refinery expansion projects, please review this presentation.
The BAAQMD Coalition meets monthly on Thursdays. To get involved in this critical work, please contact Steve Nadel, sjnsunflower (at) comcast.net