Industrialized Cyclist Notepad


Refusing to move in the right direction

…on that whole renewable energy thing, let alone make real changes.

WASHINGTON – The Environmental Protection Agency said Friday that it would delay issuance of a new rule limiting emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from new power plants after the electric power industry objected on legal and technical grounds.

The rule, proposed a year ago and scheduled to be finalized on Saturday, would have put in place the first restrictions on climate-altering gases from the power sector in the United States. Agency officials said it would be rewritten to address the concerns raised by the industry, which said that strict new carbon standards could not be met using existing technology.

via E.P.A. to Delay Emissions Rule at New Power Plants – NYTimes.com.

If we did start moving in the right direction, people would complain bitterly about the ‘inconveniences’ caused.



NYC Energy Benchmarking Report for Non-Residential Properties

As part of the Greener, Greater Buildings Plan, Finance is required to publish a benchmarking report that shows the Energy Utilization Index (EUI) and Energy Star ratings of city government buildings.

via NYC Energy Benchmarking Reports.

The Seagram Building (1958) scored a 3. Out of 100. I wrote a paragraph about this influential building in Art of Cycling.



States sue EPA over fracking emissions

Schneiderman said that the coalition of states “can’t continue to ignore the evidence of climate change or the catastrophic threat that unabated greenhouse gas pollution poses to our families, our communities and our economy.” He said Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Vermont joined in sending a required 60-day notice of intent to sue to EPA.

Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio – all states with intensive oil and gas drilling – didn’t join in the campaign. None of the states that sent the notice to the EPA are major producers of oil or gas

via Drilling Methane Emissions Lawsuit: New York And 6 Other States To Sue EPA.



Unduly Burdensome

Colorado health authorities will not fully enforce new EPA rules designed to protect people from air pollution at oil and gas facilities.

The state’s Air Quality Control Commission voted instead for a partial adoption of the federal clean-air rules. They plan to hold public meetings next year to consider full implementation.

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment officials on Thursday issued a statement saying residents already are protected under “state rules that cover many aspects of EPA’s rules.” The statement said the commission worried that adopting the new standards “could potentially trigger unduly burdensome permitting requirements” for companies.

State officials said they would make no further comment on the issue and did not respond to questions Thursday.

via Health department won't enforce all oil and gas well clean-air rules – The Denver Post.

Air Quality Control Commission.

Wouldn’t want air quality to get out of control.



EPA and local regulators’ epic fail on Chevron Richmond refinery

People should be enraged about this. Enraged at Chevron, enraged at the fake govt. investigations and blatantly captured regulators that continue to blow sulfur dioxide up the public’s ass.

Air quality officials say Chevron fashioned a pipe inside its refinery that routed hydrocarbon gases around monitoring equipment and allowed them to be burned off without officials knowing about it. Some of the gases escaped into the air, but because the company didn’t record them, investigators have no way of being certain of the level of pollution exposure to thousands of people who live downwind from the plant.

“They were routing gas through that pipe to the flare that they were not monitoring,” said Jack Broadbent, executive director of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, whose inspectors uncovered what Chevron was doing and ordered the bypass pipe removed.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s criminal enforcement unit opened an investigation in early 2012, more than two years after the local inspectors made their discovery, according to air-quality officials and others familiar with the probe. The investigation is still open, and Chevron employees have been interviewed.

via Criminal investigation at Chevron refinery – SFGate.

In case you missed it, years ago Chevron was required to install pollution monitoring equipment as part of one of those sweetheart settlement deals after they were caught violating the rules. Years ago, it was discovered that the plant had installed pipes bypassing this pollution monitoring equipment so the refinery’s unmonitored poison gases could be flared into the open air. Years ago. This became public recently only after the SF Chronicle was able to review records, which they requested as a result of the unrelated fire at the refinery.

Interesting parallels with Denver’s chronically leaking Suncor refinery. A refinery in blatant violation of all sorts of laws, but without any fear of a real crackdown by those public officials who are supposed to do something about it. So the violations continue, for years, until the truth manages to escape the regulators who’ve been keeping it from the public.



Suncor’s benzene still flowing into South Platte

It’s one of Denver’s many delightful quirks!

Six months after Suncor Energy’s oil refinery contaminated Sand Creek and nearby property, obstacles remain in containing the pollution, and a full cleanup may be years away.

via Suncor spill clean-up months, years away – The Denver Post.

This is Denver’s drinking water. Serves us right?



EPA issues fracking air pollution rules

From an EPA press release:

During the first phase, until January 2015, owners and operators must either flare their emissions or use emissions reduction technology called “green completions,” technologies that are already widely deployed at wells. In 2015, all new fractured wells will be required to use green completions. …

An estimated 13,000 new and existing natural gas wells are fractured or re-fractured each year. As those wells are being prepared for production, they emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which contribute to smog formation, and air toxics, including benzene and hexane, which can cause cancer and other serious health effects. In addition, the rule is expected to yield a significant environmental co-benefit by reducing methane, the primary constituent of natural gas. Methane, when released directly to the atmosphere, is a potent greenhouse gas—more than 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

via 04/18/2012: EPA Issues Updated, Achievable Air Pollution Standards for Oil and Natural Gas / Half of fractured wells already deploy technologies in line with final standards, which slash harmful emissions while reducing cost of compliance.

I’ll keep the line above as it was typed into the page’s description by some agency PR person, because that alone tells you all you need to know about the EPA.



Denver Radium Superfund Mini-sites
January 2, 2012, 02:50
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

A list from the EPA… This page has more detailed information on history of the sites and various remediation efforts. The EPA and City of Denver consider this situation to be generally cleaned up and finished.

The site of the Home Depot on Santa Fe had 97000 tons of radium-infused soil removed. Denver is a dirty bomb.

I like how the Purple Haze and former I-Hop on East Colfax somehow got zapped with radioactive waste. (2000-block east, north side of street.) They’re not exactly sure how. Maybe the scientist from Repo Man went by there.

“Sure is a beautiful night… Can almost … see the stars.”



Denver Radium Map
December 26, 2011, 05:01
Filed under: maps, Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

EPA cleanup sites including the infamous radioactive streets.


click to enlarge



LA Times on Suncor ooze

What's in black ooze near Colorado river? Benzene and a mystery – latimes.com.

The short article passes over some choice tidbits, the fact that the health dept. knew about this for a month and did nothing until a fisherman wrote about the spill on his blog, that the dudes at the nearby water treatment plant had to wear respirators due to mystery fumes for a week but nobody thought to trace the source, etc.




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