"Suit Seeks To Halt Plans for Richmond Oil Refinery Expansion"

"SAN FRANCISCO -- Environmental advocates seeking to curb Chevron's plans to modernize and expand its Richmond oil refinery sued Bay Area air-quality regulators Thursday, claiming they approved construction based on outdated reports that understated the plant's greenhouse gas emissions and the pollutants it would spew into surrounding neighborhoods.

The city of Richmond issued a new draft study in March that found the project would emit nearly 1 million tons a year of climate-changing greenhouse gases, and would also release increased amounts of airborne particulate matter into communities already suffering from high rates of asthma and other respiratory illnesses, the advocacy group Communities for a Better Environment said in its lawsuit in San Francisco Superior Court.

The problem, the group said, is that the Bay Area Air Quality Management District has disregarded those findings while renewing construction authority it first issued to Chevron in 2008."

Bob Egelko reports for the San Francisco Chronicle June 5, 2014.

Friday, June 6, 2014