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350 Contra Costa January Meeting: Health risks associated with oil and gas production.
Sunday, January 17 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Zoom Meeting: Sunday January 17th, 4:00pm to 5:30pm.
Sign up HERE
Dr. Jeffrey Mann presents on health risks associated with oil and gas production and use. Learn about the adverse health effects from living near oil and gas drilling sites and fracking sites, as well as health impacts from chemicals used by refineries. The widespread health consequences from burning and refining fossil fuels for power and transportation impact us all, but there is disproportionate harm to front line and low-income communities. Health has emerged as a key component of the environmental justice movement and a focus of climate activism for 350 Contra Costa.
We will also provide an overview of the two important campaigns, discussed below:
Cleaner Air from Richmond Refineries: Support Rule 6-5
Environmental justice is a major issue in a proposed Bay Area Air Quality Management District rule requiring the Richmond Chevron and Martinez PBF Energy refineries to install the best available technology to reduce harmful small particulate matter (PM 2.5) emissions. Latinx and Black residents of North Richmond have high exposures to PM 2.5, higher than average for the population affected by the refinery plumes. Health impacts include heart attacks, asthma and other respiratory illnesses, and increased mortality. No safe level of PM has been established. Chevron, which paid $9 billion in dividends to its shareholders in 2020, is pushing a lower-cost, less-effective ESP system over the more expensive wet scrubber (WGS) that would be approximately twice as effective in reducing PM emissions. You will have an opportunity to comment on the environmental injustice of allowing Chevron to offload its costs to a predominantly low-income community before the rule is finalized this spring. Dates for the public workshop held by the BAAQMD, or the proposal’s release for feedback have not been set yet.
Coming soon to a refinery near you: Biofuels
Marathon and Phillips 66 Refineries have applied for permits to process biofuels. The deadline for comments for Phillips 66 on the scoping Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) is January 20th. A coalition of environmental groups is sending a letter asking for a sixty-day extension on comments. The ridiculously short 30-day comment period is a tactic to discourage public comment. Biofuels are a complex issue and we have many questions about health and safety impacts on the community and on the environment. Look out for an action alert email next week, on how to send a letter with comments.