State of California

Summary of Board Meeting
April 24, 1997

Air Resources Board
Board Hearing Room, Lower Level
2020 "L" Street
Sacramento, California

MEMBERS PRESENT:  Hons. John D. Dunlap, III, Chairman
                                                 Joseph C. Calhoun, P.E.
                                                 Lynne T. Edgerton, Esq.
                                                 William F. Friedman, M.D.
                                                 M. Patricia Hilligoss
                                                 Jack C. Parnell
                                                 Sally Rakow
                                                 Barbara Riordan
                                                 Ron Roberts
                                                 James W. Silva



Public Meeting to Consider Cal/EPA's Environmental Technology Certification Program


Staff presented Cal/EPA's acclaimed Environmental Technology Certification Program, designed to foster the development and acceptance of new and better environmental technology. Donald Owen, Chief of the Office of Environmental Technology, highlighted the history of the program, its enabling legislation, the Air Resources Board's role in evaluating and certifying the performance of participating manufacturers' technologies, current program activities, and future directions. Working with all of the Cal/EPA boards, departments, and offices, the program is instituting a collaborative framework to evaluate and certify multi-media technologies. Bioremediation technologies, which use native or introduced microorganisms to remove pollutants from the air, ground water, or soil, are among the first category of multi-media technologies that the agency-wide program is now addressing.



RESPONSIBLE DIVISION:  EO, Office of Environmental Technology

STAFF REPORT:  Yes (7 pages)

97-3-2 Proposed Identification of Inorganic Lead as a Toxic Air Contaminant


The California Toxic Air Contaminant (TAC) Identification Program was established in 1983 by Assembly Bill 1807 and is designed to protect public health by reducing emissions of TACs that pose the highest risk. Under this Program, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) staff prepared an evaluation of the health effects of inorganic lead and the Air Resources Board (ARB) staff prepared an assessment of emissions and exposure to inorganic lead. These documents, after review and approval by an independent Scientific Review Panel, became the basis for the Board to consider identifying inorganic lead as a TAC.

California ambient air measurements are well below the current federal and state ambient air quality standards for lead. However, new information on the health effects of lead since the adoption of the ambient air quality standards approximately 20 years ago indicates that levels below the current standard are of concern. The noncancer effects, neurodevelopmental effects in children and increases in blood pressure and related cardiovascular conditions in adults, are the most significant health concerns from ambient air exposure to lead. It is now known that these effects can occur from exposures below the ambient air quality standard.

The OEHHA staff also found that there is not sufficient evidence to support the identification of an exposure level to inorganic lead below which carcinogenic and non-carcinogenic effects do not occur. They recommended that inorganic lead be treated as having no identified threshold.

The Scientific Review Panel, responsible for independently reviewing the report, found the report to be based on sound science and submitted written findings to the ARB.

Three representatives from the lead industry and one representative from the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) testified at the hearing. The lead industry representatives testified that, while they did not oppose the identification of lead, there are uncertainties in the health effects analysis in the report that were not described sufficiently in their view. Furthermore, the industry questioned whether the most up-to-date scientific evidence was fully reflected in the report. The NRDC representative testified that they support the identification of inorganic lead as a toxic air contaminant and discussed the importance of controlling lead emissions in California. In addition to the oral testimony, four letters of support for the identification of inorganic lead were received from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, Children's Environmental Health Network, Dr. Birt Harvey, who is a member of the CDC Advisory Committee on Lead Poisoning Prevention in Children, and the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

The Board voted unanimously to identify inorganic lead as a toxic air contaminant and directed the staff to add a preface to the report to recognize that uncertainties in quantifying health effects from exposure to low concentrations of lead and advances in science need to be considered when risk management decisions are made to further reduce lead emissions.


Thomas McHenry                                  Lead Industries Assoc.
                                                             Battery Council

Jane Luxton                                           Lead Industries Assoc.

Alan S. Kaufman, Ph.D.                         Lead Industries Assoc.

Janet Hathaway                                      Natural Resources Defense Council


Approved Resolution #97-17 by a unanimous vote.


STAFF REPORT:  Yes (461 pages)