Santa Barbara County Air Quality News November/December 1997
It’s a Wrap: APCD Reviews 1997Looking Back…1997Working Together Is Like A Breath of Fresh Air1998 Community Advisory Council (CAC) Meetings and Plan Adoption ScheduleUpdate on RulesPermit & Compliance Summary
Index of Topics in Past Issues
On the Air
is a bimonthly newsletter published by the Planning and Community Assistance Section of the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District. For more information on items in this newsletter, or to be added to our print subscription list, contact Bobbie Bratz, [email protected] or (805) 961-8890.
As the year concludes, we reflect on how quickly the time passed and on what we accomplished along the way. Here is a look at some of our major endeavors that will be remembered from 1997.
Air Quality Achievement 1997 was a record-breaking year for clean air in Santa Barbara County, with ozone concentrations rising above the federal health-based standard only once and exceeding the state standard only ten times. State exceedances were cut by more than half from the previous low of 22 in 1993, and violations of the federal standard were reduced 75 percent from last year. The dramatic improvements can primarily be attributed to meteorological conditions in the county this year, according to APCD monitoring supervisor Duane Sikorski.
Innovative Emission ReductionsThe Innovative Technologies Group (ITG) establishes cooperative government-industry partnerships to promote the development, testing, and application of clean air technologies in Santa Barbara County. This year alone, the group’s activities reduced ozone forming emissions by 27 tons. Projects included: purchasing four new Clean Air Express buses with low-emitting engines, initiating the Agricultural Boiler Initiative and the Booster Pump Repower Program, repowering four marine vessels with low emitting engines, completing the Pollution Prevention Initiative, and implementing nine on-road low emission projects as part of the DMV surcharge fee program.
“A” For Audit A permitting and enforcement audit conducted by the California Air Resources Board (ARB) showed that more than 96 percent of the gas stations in the county are in compliance with air quality regulations. This is the highest rate of compliance found by ARB since 1984, when the state began field inspections as part of district evaluations. The APCD also fared well in our handling of complaints and efficient permitting program. The report noted timely processing of permit applications and a nominal permit backlog for an APCD of our size. Improvements suggested by ARB include raising the mutual settlement penalties to more closely align with the settlement amounts in the State Health & Safety Code and establishing more efficient communication with fire departments in administering burn permits.
Video Tells All The APCD was recognized with a Telly Award for our video on the Clean Fuels and Energy Program, produced by Cowan Communication Arts of Santa Barbara. More than 9,000 entries competed in the highly respected 18th annual national competition for outstanding advertising, film, and video productions. Award submissions were judged by production professionals throughout the U.S. for their high standard of excellence. The ITG video aired on the government access channel during Pollution Prevention Week and was distributed to every library in Santa Barbara County.
Strategic Plan A five-year plan for the APCD was adopted by the Board in October (see July/Aug. and Sept./Oct. issues of On the Air).
Reclassification The EPA downgraded the county from a “moderate” to a “serious” non- attainment area for ozone (see Sept./ Oct. issue of On the Air).
Customer Service Every APCD staff member received customer service training. Although our customer satisfaction surveys rate our service level as high, we continue to look for areas to improve (see Sept./Oct. issue of On the Air).
Staff positions The APCD continued to downsize; this year six positions were eliminated (see July/Aug. issue of On the Air).
What are your resolutions for the New Year? What choices will you make in 1998 to improve your life, the vitality of your family, and the welfare of your community?
Now is the perfect time to think about and plan for how you can impact air quality in Santa Barbara County by getting involved with the Air Pollution Control District.
“In 1997, we saw passion. We saw people with strongly opposing views sit down together to hammer out agreements on elements of a plan that will help guide our agency over the next five years,” says APCO Doug Allard. “In 1998, we want more. We want people to provide input on projects that are crucial to our clean air efforts.”
Resolving to be an active participant in one or more of these upcoming projects could result in many benefits: personal satisfaction, a family sense of environmental awareness, and clean, healthy air for your community.
APCD Clean Air Plan EPA has reclassified Santa Barbara County as a “serious” nonattainment area for ozone based on the one-hour health standard. This now requires the county to meet the standard by Nov. 15, 1999. The APCD has 12 months to revise and submit a Clean Air Plan that addresses the requirements for a “serious” nonattainment area. Integral parts of the plan include a comprehensive evaluation of our control strategy and the ability to demonstrate that we are reducing ozone forming emissions by nine percent over three years. Each chapter of the plan will be discussed at monthly meetings by the Community Advisory Council (see chart for details), with the public comment period and workshops slated for June, July, and August. For more information, call Tom Murphy, (805) 961-8857.
APCD Fee Rule (Rule 210) The revision process for our fee rule will begin with a “Clean Slate” workshop in December, open to anyone who has an interest in the APCD fee structure. Our goal is to bring the revised Rule 210 to the Board for adoption in April or May. For more information, call Bette Easton, (805) 961-8898.
Clean Cities The APCD is part of a local coalition working toward a Clean Cities designation issued by the Department of Energy (DOE). The program is a locally-based government/ industry partnership that will expand the use of alternatives to gasoline and diesel fuel. We are among the stakeholders who are jointly developing a Clean Cities program plan, which will include: Clean Cities goals; organizational structure; analysis of the local alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) market; and commitments from fleet vehicle operators and others who will purchase and maintain AFVs, invest in refueling infrastructure, or contribute in any way to implementing the plan. Participating in the Clean Cities coalition is a way to initiate positive change for clean air in our community and help reduce air pollution from sources that are not regulated by the APCD.
For more information, call Kathy Patton, (805) 961-8852.
1998 Community Advisory Council (CAC) Meetings and Plan Adoption Schedule
January Introduction 1/7 CAC mtg.
February Emission Inv. 2/11 CAC mtg.
March Air Quality 3/11 CAC mtg.
April TCMs 4/8 CAC mtg. Emission Cont. Meas. 4/8 CAC mtg.
May Forecast Inv. 5/13 CAC mtg. Future Air Quality 5/13 CAC mtg. Plan Imp. 5/13 CAC mtg. State Req’s 5/13 CAC mtg.
June Env. Impact Report. 6/10 CAC mtg. Release Draft Plan/EIR to Public 6/26.
July Public Workshops 7/21 & 7/23. Comment Period ends 7/28.
August Finalize Plan and EIR by 12/21.
September Public Participation 9/9 CAC mtg. Plan Approval by CAC 9/9.
October 1st APCD Board Hearing 10/15. SBCAG Board adopts TCMs 10/15.
November 1st APCD Board Adoption Hearing 11/19.
December 2nd APCD Board Adoption Hearing 12/17.
Update On Rules In any situation, Dragnet’s Sergeant Friday could quote the appropriate statute, regulation, or law, including its code, section, and subset number.
Here at the APCD, we not only keep businesses apprised of rules and requirements that affect their operations – we also add and revise rules each year to reflect new information, and changes in control technologies, availability of less hazardous materials, and state and federal programs or mandates.
We provide many opportunities for participation in the rule development process: “Clean Slate” Workshops, Community Advisory Council Meetings, and hearings before the APCD Board.
Following are “just the facts” about the rules adopted by the APCD Board in 1997.
Rules Adopted in 1997
April Revisions in Regulation II (Permits) and Regulation VIII (New Source Review) These regulations together comprise the APCD permitting process. Regulation II establishes the basic permitting system for all stationary sources of pollution. Regulation VIII was designed to prevent the degradation of air quality from new or modified sources. Revisions to Regulations II and VIII encompass substantial changes to 13 different rules. The APCD met with the Community Advisory Council more than 30 times over two years and addressed over 100 issues in revising these regulations.
JulyRule 321 (Solvent Cleaning Operations) This rule controls emissions of reactive organic compounds (ROCs) from degreasers, including electronic device manufacturers, auto parts rebuilding and repair shops, medical device manufacturers, aerospace operations and more. Revisions were adopted to provide additional guidance provisions and clarify the language.
September Rule 341 (Control of Organic Gases from Landfills) This rule implements the Federal Emission Guidelines for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills (40 CFR 60 Cc) requiring operators of landfills with a capacity of 2.7 million tons or greater to estimate the landfill’s gas emissions. Those with emissions of 55 tons per year or greater of non-methane organic compounds are required to install gas collection and control systems. The rule will require the Santa Maria Landfill to be controlled by July 18, 2000, reducing emissions of reactive organic compounds (ROC) by an estimated 92 tons per year. In addition, design capacity reports will be required from other existing landfills.
September Rule 1301 (Implementation of ENVVEST Project) This rule allows for implementation of the Environmental Air Initiative (ENVVEST) at Vandenberg Air Force Base, waiving Title V requirements in exchange for emission reductions at the facility.
For more information, call Craig Strommen, (805) 961-8822.
|ATC Applications Received||10||3|
|ATC Permits Issued||6||9|
|PTO Applications Received||0||6|
|PTO Permits Issued||12||3|
|Notices of Violation Issued||12||14|
|Administrative Infractions Documented (subset of above)||1||1|