Do you notice strong odors outside your home, such as petroleum, natural gas, etc? Are you curious as to what it is you are breathing in and if there are possible health hazards? If so, the City invites you to help us take air quality samples.
The Maine Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) will provide the City with a limited number of “grab canisters” each week to be distributed to residents so they can capture their own air samples, which will then be analyzed by DEP for certain Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs). Even if you missed the training on June 10, you can still get one of these canisters. Contact the City Manager’s office at 767-7606 or email City Manager Scott Morelli at email@example.com and we will add your name to the waiting list. We will notify you a week before your canister is scheduled to arrive and then train you how to use it (very simple! Please note: Since we only have 5 to distribute each week, there is a wait list. We are doing our best to distribute canisters each week so that each of the five voting districts in the City has at least one canister.
Permanent Air Quality Testing Fixtures
Beyond this, Maine DEP will be working with the City of South Portland to install six permanent testing fixtures around the City to help monitor air quality. The first two have been installed (as of July 1, 2019) - located at the Assessor's Office at City Hall, and at the South Portland High School. DEP crews will be installing four more permanent stations (one in each voting district) in the next few weeks.
CLEAN AIR ADVISORY COMMITTEE (CAAC):
On September 10, 2019, the City Council passed ORDER #52 establishing the Clean Air Advisory Committee. Applications for the committee are being accepted through October 9. At the October 15th Council Meeting, the Council is expected to discuss and nominate members to the committee. All those interested in submitting an appliction should review the information below and submit an application here.
HOW TO REPORT/RECORD STRONG ODORS:
Smell MyCity is a smartphone app designed to crowdsource reports of pollution odors travelling through our city. All smell reports submitted through the app are visible on the map, and this information is publicly available through the website (smellmycity.org). Local residents, organizations and regulators can use smell report data to help track down potential sources of pollution in the neighborhood.
If you smell fumes, or suspect a gas/oil leak or other hazard, call 911 (emergency) or the Fire Department (non-emergency).
RESOURCES, NOTICES & PRESS RELEASES
PowerPoint Presentation from August 20, 2019 Council Workshop - South Portland VOC Air Quality Monitoring Project Update
On July 19, 2019, the City of South Portland received notice from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) that it has issued a Letter of Warning to Global Partners for failing submit a compliance testing report to the DEP on time. The report, which was due on July 5, was received 7 days late; however, the reported results were found to be in compliance. DEP advises that this deadline violation will also be addressed in a consent decree being drafted in response to a Notice of Violation that was issued to Global on June 5 for a fuel sulfur content exceedance violation.
The DEP is required to notify the City of any new violation at any regulated industry under a newly enacted statute (38 M.R.S. § 589-A), a law which was passed after lawmakers listened to public comments from residents of South Portland about the failure of federal regulators to inform the City about alleged violations at two petroleum companies that were claimed to span nearly a decade.
Press Release: South Portland Partners with Maine DEP for Air Quality Monitoring (May 30, 2019)
Press Release: Two South Portland Facilities Cited for Separate Violations (Spague and Global) (June 7, 2019)
City's Response re: Global Partners Consent Decree Public Comment
60-day extension granted for public comment regarding EPA v. Global Partners Consent Decree