Refinery Emissions Inventory Guidelines

View the Refinery Emissions Inventory Guidelines, a resource for the use of petroleum refineries and Air District staff in calculating emissions inventories.

The Air District’s Refinery Emissions Inventory Guidelines provide standardized methods and instructions for calculating emissions from petroleum refineries. These guidelines are based on emission estimates from the U.S. EPA’s Emission Estimation Protocol for Petroleum Refineries.

Over the course of five years, the Air District conducted a joint study with five San Francisco Bay Area petroleum refineries and their trade association, Western States Petroleum Association. The objective of the study was to understand the average emissions rate of organic compounds from leaks of petroleum refinery components (valves, connectors, pumps, and pressure relief devices that relieve to atmosphere) handling materials with an initial boiling point greater than 302 degrees Fahrenheit. The Heavy Liquids Study report summarizes the findings of the joint study.

Proposed Revisions

The Air District is proposing revisions to the Petroleum Refinery Emissions Inventory Guidelines (“Guidelines”; latest version published July 2019). The Air District is seeking comments on the current proposed changes.  

The Air District is also accepting comments on the entirety of the document and will consider changes as appropriate throughout the document. A history of prior revisions to the Guidelines is also presented below. To facilitate review, the District is providing two redline documents, one showing the current proposed changes to the July 2019 Guidelines, and a second showing all changes from the original Guidelines published in 2016. Comments will be considered if submitted by September 11, 2020.

Comments can be emailed to the following staff contact:

Art Valla
Principal Air Quality Engineer

History of Prior Revisions to the Guidelines

July 2019
Incorporated changes in Guidelines Sections 2, 3, 5, and Appendix A as negotiated in Settlement, Enforcement and Release Agreement dated March 4, 2019, resolving litigation WSPA, et al. v. Air District, case no. N17-2300.

May 2017
Incorporated changes in Guidelines Sections 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, and the appendices following discussions with the Bay Area petroleum refineries and Western States Petroleum Association.

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Last Updated: 6/1/2023