California hearing set on tough oil refinery rules

The Wilmington ARCO refinery is seen before dawn on December 19, 2003 in Los Angeles, California. Wilmington is a modest, blue-collar section of Los Angeles dotted by thousands of oil wells and home to three of California's major oil refineries.
The Wilmington ARCO refinery is seen before dawn on December 19, 2003 in Los Angeles, California. Wilmington is a modest, blue-collar section of Los Angeles dotted by thousands of oil wells and home to three of California's major oil refineries. David McNew/Getty Images

The Environmental Protection Agency is visiting one of the largest petroleum-producing sections of the country for hearings on a proposal that would clamp down on pollution generated by oil refineries.

The hearing is set for Wednesday in Wilmington, a modest, blue-collar section of Los Angeles dotted by thousands of oil wells and home to three of California's major oil refineries.

Under consideration is a rule that would order the adoption of new technology to better monitor and control emissions.

The EPA plans a second hearing later in Houston.

EPA officials say the proposed restrictions would reduce toxic air emissions by an estimated 5,600 tons a year.

Environmentalists say the reduction is needed to safeguard public health. Industry officials contend the proposed rules are unnecessary.

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