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Panel urges more oversight of Calif. refineries

Posted: July 15, 2013 5:00 p.m.
Updated: July 15, 2013 3:58 p.m.

RICHMOND, Calif. (AP) — The state panel created after a fire destroyed part of Chevron's Richmond refinery is recommending the creation of a new refinery task force with powers to penalize violations at oil refineries and strengthen air quality monitoring.

The Contra Costa Times reports that the Interagency Working Group on Refinery Safety said the myriad state agencies currently charged with refinery oversight should be brought together to streamline efforts.

The panel says this new "Interagency Refinery Task Force" should be created within Cal-EPA by Sept. 1.

A federal investigation found that the Aug. 6 blaze was caused by a corroded pipe that should have been replaced, and faulted state oversight as one reason for the accident.

Investigators said more needs to be done to ensure safety at the state's 14 other refineries.


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