Comments of Tar Sands Action Southern California and a coalition of ## Californiacommunity, health, environmental and social justice organizations/businesses.
September 12, 2013Southern California Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) Address Info Address infoLos Angeles City Councilmembers Address Info Address infoDear SCAQMD and Los Angeles City Councilmembers,Please consider the following request as
signed and supported by over ## community,health, environmental and social justice organizations/businesses in the SouthernCalifornia area
share concerns over Valero Energy Corp’s proposal to ship and process
Canadian Tar Sands in Wilmington, California.Los Angeles communities experience higher rates of asthma, because we breathe some of the
most polluted air in the country. Valero’s oil refinery in Wilmington is one of our biggest
Any proposed changes to the refinery that could significantly increase pollutionin our communities should be evaluated carefully through an open process thatencourages public participation
.We are concerned to learn that the SCAQMD is considering a permit application, without publiccomment or disclosure, for the construction of a rail terminal that will allow Valero to import for processing 60
,000 barrels of diluted bitumen (dilbit) per day from Canada’s tar sands.
Moving more than 76
% of the refinery’s inputs from conventional crude to diluted bitumen could
significantly increase air pollution in communities downwind of the refinery. Many studies havefound that refining diluted bitumen releases into the air greater concentrations of sulphur dioxide, various heavy metals, and other harmful pollutants.Diluted bitumen is also more corrosive than conventional crude oil. Significantly increasingsupplies into the refinery could make corrosion-related accidents more likely and pose a uniqueset of pollution and safety related risks to both local communities and refinery workers.The Air District has the authority to conduct a public comment period on permits that couldresult in significantly higher levels of air pollution. Because replacing significant volumes of conventional crude oil inputs into the refinery with diluted bitumen could result in significantlyhigher levels of air pollution,
we encourage the district to do the following:
Conduct an open and transparent evaluation process, including accepting publiccomment on the proposed crude-by-rail facility,
Increase public participation by widely publicizing the public comment period, and
Release all relevant information related to the project for public review.