Valero fined $183,000 for 2010 incidents

Repost from The Contra Costa Times
[Editor: These fines are for violations in 2010.  In October of 2013, Valero agreed to pay $300,300 in fines for violations occurring in 2011 and 2012 (see SFGate story, Benicia Herald story).  At that time, Mayor Patterson and I asked the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (independently) to consider making the fines available to the local setting where the violations occurred, a practice not without precedent.  I never a definitive answer on my request from Eric Stevenson, the District’s Director of Technical  Serevices.  He did inform me in November 2013 that the District had scheduled a meeting with Mayor Patterson to discuss this request.  I wonder what happened?  It makes sense to me that the City of Benicia could finance better air monitoring using these funds.  – RS]

Benicia refinery hit with $183,000 fine for air quality violations

(Vallejo) Times-Herald   03/28/2014 04:56:30 PM PDT

BENICIA — Valero has agreed to pay $183,000 to settle air quality violations at its Benicia refinery, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District announced Friday.

The civil penalty covers seven notices of violation that the air district issued to Valero in 2011 for incidents that occurred in 2010, according to an air district news release.

The violations were related to a December 2010 upset of Valero’s fluid catalytic cracking unit, which converts heavy gas oils into gasoline and other lighter compounds. The upset resulted in intermittent violations of opacity and particulate standards at Valero’s main stack over a 10-day period, as well as violations of carbon monoxide and sulfur standards at other affected equipment, the district said.

All settlement funds will be used to fund air district activities such as the inspection and enforcement activities that led to the settlement.

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