Thursday, April 12, 2007

What Constitutes Flaring?

CCAM is pursuing this determination of why there is so much recurring flaring.If you would like to help, please log your findings with date, time, odor, smoke, noise, vibration, and flare observations and either email them to or send to LDEQ or 888-763-5424 or online services -- incident reports at

Our industrial neighbor had assured us in the Fall of 2007 that they were working on the reliablity of their processes and equipment as a plan to reduce flaring in the neighborhood. Since most of us have observed the various occurances of smoke, flame and its accompanying noise and odors, we thought it might be worth the effort to document the obervations and track the industry's explainations to the LDEQ. This corporation, in our opinion, needs vigilant attention to remain compliant and we think this community effort should better identify recurring problems such as faulty compressors, hydrogen supply problems, instrument failure, unit shutdowns, or true emergencies.

According to Denny Larson of Global Monitor:

Flaring rules vary:
- more than 6 minutes of black smoke from incomplete combustion - should be a violation - video of the time may be needed to prove.
- even without black smoke, flaring may be illegal if the refinery is using the flare as a "pollution control" device - instead of as a true emergency relief device - You may need the accident report from LADEQ as filed by Murphy to determine - also see if they termed the incident "preventable" - if so - the cause of that incident - ie compressor failure etc - should not happen more than once - under the clean air act: they have a duty to prevent it the second time
-also look at the reports to see if the flaring and related cause exceeded permit limits

There are some very informative and helpful documents on the flaring subject at these links.

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