Resources Agency Building
Auditorium, First Floor
1416 Ninth Street
Sacramento, CA

January 25, 1985
8:30 a.m.


85-2-1 Public Hearing to Consider Adoption of a 001
Regulation Identifying Benzene as a Toxic Air

Other Business

a. Closed Session
1. Personnel (as authorized by State Agency Open Meeting
Act, Govt. Code Sec. 11126(a).)
2. Litigation (Pursuant to the attorney-client privilege,
Evidence Code Sec. 950-962, and Govt. Code Sec.
b. Research Proposals
c. Delegations to Executive Officer

ITEM NO.: 85-2-1

Toxic Air Contaminant Identification (Benzene) (Regulatory).


The ARB staff recommends that benzene be identified as a toxic
air contaminant and further recommends that benzene be found to
not have a threshold exposure level below which no significant
adverse health effects are anticipated.


Health and Safety Code Section 39650, et seq. requires the ARB
staff to prioritize hazardous substances for consideration by the
Air Resources Board as "toxic air contaminants" (TAC) as defined
by the bill. Selection of a substance for the Board's
consideration shall be based on the substance's risk to the
public, emission amounts, usage in California, atmospheric
persistence, and ambient air concentrations.

The ARB staff, after consulting the Department of Health Services
(DHS) selected benzene for the Board's consideration for listing
as a TAC. As a "hazardous air pollutant" designated by the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) per Section 112 of the
Clean Air Act, benzene must be identified as a TAC by the Board
according to Section 39655.

The staff selected benzene because it is a known human carcinogen
(the basis for EPA's "hazardous air pollutant" designation), it
is ubiquitously emitted by the handling and burning of gasoline,
it is persistent in the atmosphere, and its presence in the
atmosphere is well documented.

As required by Section 39661, a report prepared jointly by DHS
and ARB staff reviewing the health effects and exposures of
benzene, has been reviewed by the Scientific Review Panel
established according to Section 39670. The Scientific Review
Panel finds that the benzene report constitutes a reasonable
basis for regulatory action. The Scientific Review Panel
recommends that the Air Resources Board list benzene as a toxic
air contaminant having no threshold.


The identification of benzene as a TAC, per se, is not expected
to result in any adverse environmental or economic impacts.
However, specific control measures may be developed subsequent to
identification of benzene as a TAC. Negative environmental or
economic impacts will be included in the consideration of such
control measure.