State of California
AIR RESOURCES BOARD
The Beverly Garland Motor Lodge
1780 Tribute Road
March 26, 1981
81-5-1 Public Meeting to Discuss Problems Associated 001
with Vapor Recovery Systems at Gasoline Stations
and Possible Solutions to Such Problems.
81-5-2 Public Hearing to Consider the Adoption, as 036
Revisions to the California State Implementation
Plan, of Plans for the Attainment and Maintenance
of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for
Ozone in the Mountain Counties Air Basin Portion
of El Dorado County and the Mid-Portion of Placer
81-5-3 Other Business
a. Executive Session
b. Research Proposals
c. Delegations to Executive Officer
ITEM NO.: 81-5-1
Determination of Reliability Problems with Phase II Gasoline
Vapor-Recovery Systems at Service Stations.
The Air Resources Board's Enforcement Division recently surveyed
478 gasoline stations (including 3,630 dispenser nozzles) in
Sacramento County to determine the problems station operators and
the public have been having with Phase II vapor-recovery
equipment. Phase II equipment is that equipment used to prevent
escape of fugitive gasoline vapor emissions into the atmosphere
during fueling of a motor vehicle.
In Sacramento County, three types of vapor-recovery equipment are
being used: the balance-type system (little-vacuum), the Red
Jacket aspirator-assist type system, and the Hirt vacuum-assist
type system. Two different types of nozzles are used on the
balance-type system: OPW and Emco Wheaton nozzles. The OPW
nozzle has a removable ring and the Emco Wheaton nozzle usually
has non-removable riveted bands on the spout for locking the
nozzle in the fillpipe during fueling of a vehicle.
The summarized results of the survey are presented in Table S-1,
Figure S-1, and the following paragraphs: (see Board book)
The Red Jacket and Hirt systems are liked the most by the station
operators, probably because they had fewer maintenance problems
and were easier for the public to use. The balance-type
vapor-recovery system was disliked the most, probably because it
required frequent maintenance.
Maintenance required with vapor-recovery equipment fell into the
following categories: replacing rings (27 percent, mainly on OPW
nozzles); face seals (18 percent); bellows (21 percent); and
hoses (34 percent). Replacement of rings could be prevented if
they were tightened frequently.
As a result of the survey, the staff concluded the following:
1) Of the three types of vapor-recovery systems examined, the
balance-type vapor-recovery system was found to have the
most maintenance problems (34 percent).
2) The Red Jacket and Hirt type vapor-recovery systems had the
fewest maintenance problems (12 and 7 percent,
3) Customer use of a nozzle unit as compared to operator use of
a nozzle unit did not significantly increase maintenance
4) Service station operator estimates indicate a trend toward
higher maintenance costs (excluding labor) for the
balance-type system ($343/station) than for the Red Jacket and
Hirt systems ($119 and $179/station, respectively) on a six-month
5) Often the OPW ring slips off the nozzle spout into the
customer's fuel tank after repeated use of the nozzle.
6) Emco Wheaton nozzles showed a much smaller percentage of
maintenance problems than the OPW nozzles (8 percent vs. 31
percent, respectively). In addition, the Emco Wheaton
nozzle is 16 percent less expensive than the OPW nozzle.
7) The largest single source of customer dissatisfaction with
the balance-type vapor-recovery system is the customer's
inability to lock the nozzle in the fillpipe because of a
missing ring on OPW-type nozzles.
8) Customer acceptance of the vapor-recovery system program
would be greatly enhanced if the rings did not come off the
nozzle spouts and if the customer were instructed on how to
use the nozzle properly.
9) OPW is in the process of testing a new nozzle spout-ring
assembly. In addition, Emco Wheaton is developing a more
durable bellows material. Each of these improvements should
increase customer satisfaction and reduce emissions and
10) Phase II gasoline vapor-recovery systems not only help to
significantly control air pollution but also reduce
California dependence on oil by 32 million gallons per
Based on the survey's results and subsequent conclusions, the
staff recommends the following:
1) The Executive Officer should conduct a hearing to consider
revocation of the certification of the OPW balance-system
nozzle and either seek penalties for OPW's failure to supply
nozzles which meet the certification requirements and/or
require OPW to supply retrofit kits to upgrade each nozzle
to the minimum acceptable performance level.
2) The Board should consider amendments to nozzle certification
requirements to require more durable bellows material as
soon as it is available.
3) The Board should consider regulations to require gas station
operators to better inform the public on the proper use of
the balance-type nozzles. Information could be in the form
a) signs at the gasoline station illustrating how to use
b) brochures which identify the purpose and proper use of
c) public service television spots.
4) Local air pollution control districts should increase their
enforcement efforts of gasoline-service-station vapor-recovery rules
to minimize the extent to which poor nozzle maintenance makes the
nozzles difficult to use.
ITEM NO.: 81-5-2
Public Hearing to Consider the Adoption, as Revisions to the
California State Implementation Plan, of Plans for the Attainment
and Maintenance of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for
Ozone in the Mountain Counties Air Basin Portion of El Dorado
County and the Mid-Portion of Placer County.
SUMMARY AND STATEMENT OF REASONS
The federal Clean Air Act (CAA), as amended in 1977, requires
states to submit to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA) a revised State Implementation Plan (SIP) for designated
nonattainment areas which demonstrates through legally
enforceable measures the attainment of National ambient Air
Quality Standards (NAAQS) for criteria pollutants. Section 39602
of the Health and Safety Code designates the Air Resources Board
(ARB) as the state agency responsible for the preparation of the
The Mountain Counties Air Basin (MCAB) portion of El Dorado
County and the mid-portion of Placer County are designated
nonattainment because of violations of the NAAQS for ozone.
Nonattainment Plans (NAPs) for each of the two areas were
prepared locally to meet the requirement in Part D of the Clean
Air Act. The plans were adopted after public hearing by the El
Dorado County and Placer County Air Pollution Control Boards on
September 8, 1980, and August 26, 1980, respectively.
The ARB staff believes that, in view of the uncertainty regarding
the impact of transported pollutants, and given the measures
already adopted by the local districts, the control strategies in
both plans are adequate to comply with CAA requirements. During
the summer of 1980, the ARB, through its extramural research
program, completed the field work for a study intended to
quantify the contribution of pollutants transported from the
Sacramento Area on areas such as the MCAB. Results of the study
are expected to be available during the summer of 1981 and will
indicate whether additional control measures are necessary to
attain the ozone standard.
If the results of the transport study indicate that control
measures are needed to attain the NAAQS for ozone, the air
pollution control districts (APCDs) could adopt additional
control measures for reduction of emissions of organic compounds.
Readily available control measures that could be pursued quickly,
if needed, are degreasing and cutback asphalt rules and a more
effective perchlorethylene dry cleaning rule in the MCAB portion
of El Dorado County; and a more effective degreasing rule and a
perchlorethylene dry cleaning rule in the mid-portion of Placer
The staff believes that the locally submitted plans satisfy the
requirements of the Clean Air Act and recommends:
1. The Board adopt the local plans, as conditioned in the staff
report, as revisions to the SIP.
2. The Board request an extension of the attainment date for
ozone beyond December 31, 1982, to no later than December
3. The Board delegate authority to the Executive Officer to
hold a hearing to adopt additional stationary source control
measures in the event that appropriate regulations are not
locally adopted within six months after the need for them is
determined and communicated to the District.
4. The Board find that further study by the El Dorado County
and Placer County APCDs is necessary for possible future
adoption of existing and forthcoming suggested control
measures including those for auto refinishin