Valero submitted a letter to the City of Benicia regarding the May 5 PG&E power outage and subsequent City Council discussion of a local Industrial Safety Ordinance (ISO).
Community Update: Valero Submits Letter to City of Benicia
As part of our ongoing commitment to keeping our community informed, we want to provide you with a brief upda
te. We recently submitted a letter to the City of Benicia regarding the May 5 PG&E power outage and subsequent City Council discussion of a local Industrial Safety Ordinance (ISO).
A local ISO is a costly exercise in City Staff’s time and resources to essentially enact systems that are already in place. Our letter details existing robust regulations and community alert systems:
California Just Enacted Strictest-in-the-Nation Refinery Regulations: The Department of Industrial Relations just finalized the nation’s most stringent standards for industrial safety and response which have been praised by national and state regulators and labor and environmental organizations. This includes reporting and root cause analysis of any incidents.
The City Has Emergency Communication Systems: Benicia has existing emergency communication systems in place including social media, text messages, cable television, sirens and phone notifications. You can sign up to receive notifications at www.AlertBenicia.com or by clicking the below button.
Fenceline Monitoring by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District: We are already working with the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to implement its fenceline monitoring requirements for all Bay Area refineries, which will provide verified data on a publicly available website.
"We know that Valero has been penalized and fined already for this event. Has PG&E been fined or penalized or anything so far for this?
It seems that there's a little disparity if the problem was caused by PG&E and Valero has yet to be the only one to be penalized"
Vice Mayor Steve Young
Benicia City Council Meeting, May 16, 2017
“Flaring is a normal process when a facility has gone through an upset,” he said. “That’s what happened on May 5 when they lost all power. The facility went through an upset, and they have to bring themselves back to a steady state.”
Tom Flannigan, Bay Area Air Quality Management District
Benicia Herald, June 16, 2017
On the state's newly adopted regulations:
"This is the most protective regulation in the nation for the safety and health of refinery workers and surrounding communities. This new regulation will ensure California's oil refineries are operated with the highest levels of safety possible and with injury and illness prevention in mind."