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ARCO TAKES ISSUE WITH NEW AQMD 'RECLAIM' PROGRAM

 ARCO TAKES ISSUE WITH NEW AQMD 'RECLAIM' PROGRAM
 LOS ANGELES, Jan. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- ARCO (NYSE: ARC) said today it


cannot support a new emissions-trading program being considered by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) because mandatory aspects of the program are unrealistic and would cripple the Southern California industrial sector if implemented.
 "We cannot endorse a plan that calls for forced reductions of emissions from stationary sources regardless of whether such reductions are the most effective or economic way to meet federal and state clean air goals," said George H. Babikian, president of ARCO Products Co., the refining and marketing division of ARCO.
 Prior to Jan. 29 when the AQMD staff unveiled its new Regional Clean Air Incentives Market (RECLAIM) program, ARCO had supported efforts to develop free market trading of emissions within the current regulatory process, said Babikian.
 "Now, AQMD has gone a significant step further. The proposed plan would also require each stationary source, like a factory or refinery, to reduce reactive organic gas and nitrogen oxide emissions an additional 75 to 100 percent by the year 2010," said Babikian.
 "These improvements would be on top of those already made by industry in compliance with earlier regulations. ARCO, for example, has already reduced emissions at product manufacturing sites in the South Coast Air Basin by about 70 percent and at ARCO service stations by about 95 percent.
 "Neither the federal Clean Air Act nor state law requires such site- specific targeting. What they seek is a reduction in total emissions, regardless of the source. The AQMD plan would impose an additional burden on industry that is technologically unrealistic and financially unreasonable. It would lead to a crippling of industry in this region," Babikian added.
 "We encourage creative ideas that would increase flexibility, reduce delays while achieving required air quality standards, and provide the greatest environmental benefit for each dollar of cost," said Babikian.
 "Over the years, ARCO has worked closely with air quality officials throughout the state in developing and promoting clean air projects and technology," he continued.
 "In 1989, we were the first company to develop and market a cleaner- burning reformulated gasoline and we vigorously supported the tough clean air standards adopted by the California Air Resources Board last year.
 "In addition, we plan to spend up to $800 million over the next few years to make even cleaner-burning gasolines at our Los Angeles Refinery, as well as further reduce refinery emissions.
 "While ARCO remains committed to improving air quality in the South Coast, it is our view that significant emission reductions must come from the entire Southern California business community, as well as the general public," Babikian said.
 -0- 1/31/92
 /CONTACT: Annie Reutinger of ARCO, 213-486-3181/
 (ARC) CO: ARCO ST: California IN: OIL SU:


EH -- LA027 -- 5853 01/31/92 18:26 EST
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 31, 1992
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