Monday, June 6, 2016

red herring

As local council and the planning commission go forward with Valero Energy's plans to construct their new administration building on Ohio Street in Chalmette, Valero Energy's Meraux plant has refused to meet in a town hall with residents along with the local District Council member to discuss commercial use of neighborhood properties.

In the meantime, the Louisiana DEQ [EDMS AI# 1238 document 10203850] received an application on May 19 2016 for a slurry project at Valero Energy's Meraux plant.
select download the document

Valero Meraux refining plans to bring slurry from other Valero refineries to its Meraux plant via marine vessels to process in the ROSE unit.

what's this going to sound and smell like??

The project includes a new fixed roof storage tank, changing another tank from an interior floating roof tank for gasoline to an exterior floating roof gasoline tank, increasing throughput at the dock, replacing the underground pipelines from the marine dock to the processing campus with overhead pipelines, and replacing a process safety valve in the NHT unit (naphtha hydrotreating), 

The application also includes removing some FCC unit and ALKY unit emissions from the Title V permit (fluid catalytic cracking unit and alkylation unit). Creditable contemporaneous changes, if any, were not required reporting.

All this, like some previous permits for other projects, is considered a "minor" modification of the Title V permit, and again the VOC emissions are just under the PSD threshold.

The application shows the benzene annual maximum ground level concentration at 9.6 compared to the Louisiana State limit of 12.  Residents would like Valero to compare the 9.6 amount to the benzene limits in other states, to demonstrate that Valero is going to every effort to protect the adjacent residential area.

The PSD threshold limit is the annual emission rate above which a company may need additional pollution controls or perform a review.  The review would include air quality analysis, and an environmental impact analysis.  It would also require public involvement, something Valero seems to think is involvement with government officials and those working in the public sector, maybe even special interest groups, but not a town hall with the residents who will be most impacted. 

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