TCEQ Continues Effort To Improve Air Quality At Lynchburg Ferry

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) recently proposed a change to the Lynchburg Ferry Air Pollutant Watch List (APWL) boundary for styrene. Styrene concentrations in this area have exceeded the TCEQ’s odor-based Air Monitoring Comparison Value of 25 parts per billion by volume every year since 2003. The concentrations of styrene observed at Lynchburg Ferry in Harris County have the potential to cause many negative odor-related health effects, including nausea and headaches, as well as contributes to the region’s reputation of having stinky air.

(Credit: www.ens-newswire.com)

To address this issue, the TCEQ has proposed a boundary reevaluation of the Lynchburg Ferry APWL area. The proposed change would reduce the size of the APWL area to help TCEQ better focus its resources on the sources and facilities emitting styrene that are contributing to the elevated levels observed at the Lynchburg Ferry monitor.

Elevated concentrations of styrene have not been the only pollution concern in the Lynchburg Ferry region. For close to a decade, the area had been on the watch list for elevated concentrations of benzene (the area was removed from the watch list in 2010).

We applaud TCEQ’s choice to zero in on the specific sources of emissions that are contributing to the problems in the Lynchburg Ferry area. The table below lists the facilities of interest to the TCEQ and which will be the focus of specific styrene reduction efforts. The tier I facility will be encouraged to reduce styrene emissions while Tier II facilities have been identified as actual or potential styrene emitters and may be encouraged to reduce emissions.

EDF encourages immediate action from these sources to reduce emissions in the Lynchburg Ferry area.  The area has been on the APWL since 2003, and the number of exceedances rose to 27 in 2010, up from 20 in 2009. We believe that focusing on a few specific facilities within a more well-defined area is a good step forward for the agency and will result in lowered styrene emissions and reduced impacts on the health for citizens who live in the Lynchburg community.

The TCEQ will accept comments on the Lynchburg Ferry APWL boundary through December 23, 2011. You can email comments to APWL@tceq.texas.gov or call (512) 239-1117 for any questions. You can also attend a TCEQ public meeting regarding this proposal on December 14, 2011, at 6:00 p.m. at the North Channel Branch Library, located at 15741 Wallisville Road, Houston, Texas 77049.

Facilities Emitting Styrene in the Lynchburg Ferry APWL Area

Classification

Regulated Entity

Tons of Styrene Emitted in 2009

Tier IChannel Shipyard3.7935
Tier IISouthwest Shipyard0.0004
Tier IIVopak Terminal Deer Park28.0687
Tier IIVopak Logistics Services USA Deer Park0.4761
Tier IIKirby Inland Marine, LP0.0842
Tier IIK-SOLVNo EI
Tier IIStolt Tank Cleaning Facility and Depot0.1424
Tier IIStolt Barge ServicesNo EI
Tier IIIntercontinental Terminals Deer Park TerminalStyrene not reported
Tier IISlay TransportationNo information available
Tier IIJohann HaltermannNo information available

No EI- means the source did not submit an emissions inventory

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