Gas Station Company Valero Fined $300K for Bay Area Air Quality Transgressions

Sure, you know Valero from their brightly colored gas stations, but if you've been following California politics for a while, you may remember when Valero got involved here. They were a big funder in Prop 23, a measure to repeal landmark climate change legislation. It turns out that they have other plans for chemicals in California air, as they have settled and acknowledge violations:

The Valero Refining Co. has agreed to pay more than $300,000 for repeated air quality violations, including gas leaks, over the past few years, regulators announced Tuesday.

The company will pay $300,300 in civil penalties for 33 violations in 2011 and 2012 at its petroleum refinery in Benicia, according to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. (SF Chronicle)

Valero actually self-reported, so this is somewhat a sign of the system working. For the people of the East Bay who face increased asthma rates, however, the system really didn't work soon enough. Children in Richmond have asthma rates twice normal rates, and air quality is thought to be chiefly responsible.

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