Pacific Steel Report on Health Risk from Emissions Past Due

By Riya Bhattacharjee
Tuesday August 22, 2006

Pacific Steel Casting Corporation will hand over their health risk assessment report to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) in the first week of September, according to Elizabeth Jewel of Aroner, Jewel & Ellis Partners, the company’s public relations consultants.  

Pacific Steel, located on Second Street in West Berkeley, was sued by the air district on Aug. 14 for “failure to meet statutory deadlines for reporting emissions, and for violating the schedule contained in a 2005 Settlement Agreement designed to resolve an ongoing series of air quality complaints.” 

BAAQMD has also ordered the court to fine the company $10,000 for every day that it fails to submit the emissions inventory report, which has already been delayed by two months. 

The City of Berkeley and neighborhood groups are also waiting to get their hands on this report. The city and the public will have access to the report only after the BAAQMD receives it. 

Communities for Better Environment, an environmental watchdog group, filed a motion for a preliminary injunction on Thursday and asked the court to order Pacific Steel to stop violating their 2.5-ton emission limit from source 14, which is reportedly one of the main sources for the facility’s emission production. 

Neighborhood groups such as Cleanaircoalition.net have planned to get together with Green Action for Health and Environmental Justice and other environmentalists on Sept. 16 for a Pacific Steel protest march to demand the release of the heath impact emission reports.