Release 98-41
July 10, 1998
CONTACT:  Jerry Martin
(916) 322-2990

ARB Settles with Redding Petroleum Over Illegal Diesel Fuel Sales

        SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board (CARB) today announced a $132,500 settlement with Redding Petroleum, Inc., of Concord, suspected of selling over 1.3 million gallons of noncomplying diesel fuel.

        Redding was purchasing fuel that was legal in California only for sources such as generators, boilers and other non-vehicular industrial engines. Redding continued to sell the non-complying diesel fuel for 11 months after the October 1, 1993 effective date for cleaner-burning diesel fuel, required statewide to reduce emissions from diesel-powered vehicles. State air quality officials were alerted to the firm's business practices by Redding's competitors who were selling the cleaner, but more expensive CARB diesel. Redding may have been selling the cheaper, dirtier fuel and labeling it as "CARB diesel," indicating to customers that it was acceptable for motor vehicle use.

        Following the Air Resources Board's investigation, Contra Costa County District Attorney Gary T. Yancey filed a civil suit in 1997, resulting in the $132,500 settlement.

        Diesel vehicles account for only 2 percent of California's on-road vehicular fleet, but cause approximately 30 percent of the nitrogen oxide emissions, a precursor to health-threatening ground-level ozone, and about 60 percent of particulates. The use of cleaner CARB diesel is an effort to reduce ozone and particulate matter emissions that exacerbate asthma, respiratory disease and heart problems.

        CARB will consider diesel exhaust as a Toxic Air Contaminant at its July 30 Board meeting. The 30 pound staff report, Proposed Identification of Diesel Exhaust as a Toxic Air Contaminant, is available from the CARB's Office of Communications at (916) 322-2990. The Initial Statement of Reasons, a comprehensive summary of the larger report, is also available for those who do not need the entire document.

        The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

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