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 learn about the City's air quality monitoring program in partnership with Maine DEP.
The Maine Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) provided 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). This program ran from June 10, 2019 to September 9, 2019.
Permanent Air Quality Testing Fixtures
Beyond this, Maine DEP worked with the City of South Portland to install five permanent testing fixtures around the City (one in each voting district) to help monitor air quality.
Fixed 24-hour sampling site locations and status:
- District 1: Bug Light Park (first sample 8/13/2019)
- District 2: City Assessors Building (first sample 6/26/2019)
- District 3: South Portland High School (first sample 7/2/2019)
- District 4: School Administration Building (first sample 9/30/2019)
- District 5: Redbank Community Center (first sample 10/6/2019)
CLEAN AIR ADVISORY COMMITTEE (CAAC):
On September 10, 2019, the City Council passed ORDER #52 establishing the Clean Air Advisory Committee. The purpose of the ad hoc Clean Air Advisory Committee shall be to present the South Portland City Council with timely yet comprehensive recommendations on improving air quality throughout South Portland. Unless their charge is extended by the City Council, the committee shall be considered dissolved upon presentation of the recommendations at a meeting of the City Council.
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
The Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is currently reviewing a license amendment submitted by Global Companies LLC (Global) related to the recent consent decree entered into between Global and the U.S. Department of Justice. This consent decree was the result of violations alleged to have occurred at Global’s South Portland facility by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The DEP originally was planning to host a meeting with the public on March 31 where they would review the application and take comments from the public. However, due to COVID-19, that meeting was canceled.
Instead of this meeting, the DEP now plans to meet with the City’s Clean Air Advisory Committee (CAAC) on Monday, June 1 at 6:30 pm via Zoom to review the application and take questions from members of the CAAC. DEP will NOT be taking questions or comments from other members of the public. However, there are still ways for you to get your questions and comments considered. Click here for more information.
Information from Maine DEP
- Follow up from November 26, 2019 (Q&A)
- April 1992 Hydrogeologic Investigation BP Getty Koch Fuel Terminals
Maine DEP Air & Environmental License Renewal/Amendment Notices
These applications (in full) are available at the City Clerk's office for public inspection.
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