VIDEO: Air District Investigation Shows Valero Benicia Refinery Released Toxic Chemicals for Years

Brief report and video by Benicia videographer Constance Beutel, Ed.D.

Constance Beutel

In an unusual and welcomed step, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District held a community meeting for Benicia to discuss the upcoming Air Board meeting (March 15, 2022) regarding Valero’s nearly 18 year violation of District emissions standards.

To say the least, Benicia Community members, City Staff and some electeds were shocked to learn of the long unreported emissions exceedance as well as the Air District’s withholding of this information for over three years. To its credit, the Air District was present in full force to present their findings and to hear every question and concern voiced by those in attendance.

The Air District will be advising/suggesting that the Air Board grant that penalty fines assigned to Valero be given to the City of Benicia.

The tone of the community’s response was mostly of frustration over years of voicing concern and not being kept in the loop as to major issues and in not rectifying on-going serious problems.

Constance Beutel

Highlights from Bay Area Air Quality Management District Meeting: Benicia CA, February 24, 2022

Longer version (1 hour): Bay Area Air Quality Management District Community Meeting: Benicia, CA February 24, 2022