Chevron agrees to $225,000 settlement of air quality violations at Richmond refinery

Flaring at the Richmond Chevron refinery from July 24. 

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) The Bay Area Air Quality Management District announced today that Chevron USA Inc. has agreed to pay $225,500 to settle violations of air quality regulations at its Richmond refinery.  

District executive officer Jack Broadbent said the settlement covered 51 notices of violations, most of which occurred in 2015 and 2016. He said most of the violations were corrected soon after they were discovered.

Broadbent said the settlement money will be used to fund inspection and enforcement activities by the air quality agency.

A Chevron spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

The settlement covers several different types of violations of rules and regulations. They included:
       *Several violations of the federal limit on the amount of hydrogen 
sulfide that can be burned at combustion sources. 
       *A public nuisance violation for flaring associated with an 
unplanned shutdown. 
       *Violation of the opacity standard for smoke associated with 
       *Three violations of a requirement to monitor fuel flow to 
furnaces to control nitrogen oxide emissions.  
       *Failure to include certain components in the leak detection and 
repair program.
       *Emissions of nitrogen oxides that exceeded the limits established 
in an air district permit for furnace emissions 
       *Failure to monitor during vessel depressurization. 

Broadbent said in a statement, "The air district treats every violation of air quality rules very seriously. Dedicated refinery inspectors and regular inspections help to ensure that violations are corrected quickly and air quality and the public are protected."

The district, which has its headquarters in San Francisco, adopts and enforces air pollution control regulations for stationary sources in the nine-county Bay Area.