Primer on the Clean Air Act Department of Environment and Natural Resources ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT BUREAU Region I, San Fernando City La Union
Implementation of the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999 the phase-out of lead in gasoline by January 2001 has mostly eliminated the lead problem. Sulfur dioxide emissions in Metro Manila have fallen because of the closure of a few power plants around the metropolis. Selected private sector enterprises have taken steps to help reduce vehicular emissions by allowing only pollution free vehicles to enter their premises. Similarly, civil society organizations have been very active in promoting awareness and catalyzing public opinion for improvements in air quality.
What is the Clean Air Act? Republic Act No. 8749, otherwise known as the Philippine Clean Air Act, is a comprehensive air quality management policy and program which aims to achieve and maintain healthy air for all Filipinos.
The Clean Air Act provides that the state shall: • Protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature; • Promote and protect the global environment while recognizing the primary responsibility of local government units to deal with environmental problems; • Recognize that the responsibility of cleaning the habitat and environment is primarily area-based; • Recognize that “polluters must pay”; • Recognize that a clean and healthy environment is for the good of all and should therefore be the concern of all.
Designation of Airsheds The Secretary of the DENR, upon recommendation of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), will divide the country into different airsheds. Airsheds are to be designated based on climate, weather, meteorology and topology, which affect the mixture and diffusion of pollutants in the air, share common interests or face similar development problems.
Management of Airshed Airsheds are to be managed by multi-sectoral Governing Boards chaired by the Secretary of the DENR with representatives from the local governments concerned (province/city/municipality), the private sector, people’s organizations, NGOs and concerned government agencies.
Function of Governing Boards Formulate policies and standards subject to national laws; Prepare a common action plan; Coordinate its members; Submit and publish an annual Air Quality Status Report for their airshed.
Support Groups To carry out the day-to-day work of the board, a nine-member Executive Committee is to be elected at large by the members of the Governing Board. Technical Working Groups are also to be formed to ensure broader participation of all stakeholders. The EMB will serve as the technical secretariat of each Governing Board.
Air Quality Management Fund • An Air Quality Management Fund (AQMF), to be administered by the DENR, through the Bureau, as a special account in the National Treasury shall be established to finance containment, removal and clean up operations of the government in air pollution cases, guarantee restoration of ecosystems and rehabilitate areas affected by violations to the ACT, support research, enforcement and monitoring activities of the relevant agencies. Such fund may likewise be allocated per airshed for the undertakings herein stated.
Sources for the AQMF shall include Air emission charges from industries and motor vehicles; Fines and penalties for non-compliance with air pollution standards; Grants from both private sector and donor organization; Limited percentage (5 to 10%) of the proceeds of the Program Loan for the Metro Manila Air Quality Improvement Sector Development Program
Ensuring Good Air Quality The National Ambient Air Quality Guideline Values, in order to protect health, safety and the general welfare, have been set in the law. These are to be routinely reviewed by the DENR, through EMB, in coordination with other concerned agencies and sectors.
What are covered by the Clean Air Act All potential sources of air pollution (mobile, point and area sources) must comply with the provisions of the law. All emissions must be within the air quality standards. • Mobile sources refer to vehicle like cars, trucks, buses, jeepneys, tricycles, motorcycles and vans. • Point sources refer to stationary sources such as industrial firms and smokestacks of power plants, hotels and other establishments. • Area sources refer to sources of emission other than the above. These include smoking, burning of garbage, and dust from construction, unpaved grounds, etc.
What are the compliance mandates for mobile sources of air pollution Exhaust emission standards for various mobile sources that are either in-use, new, rebuilt, and imported second hand have been set. All new motor vehicles classified under the Philippine National Standards 1891 of the Bureau of Product Standards of Department of Trade and Industry, whether locally assembled/ manufactures or imported are to be covered by a Certificate of Conformity (COC). The COC is to be issued by the DENR to the motor vehicle manufacturer, assembler or importer. In-use motor vehicles will only be allowed renewal of their registration upon proof of compliance with emission standards through actual testing by the Motor Vehicle Inspection System (MVIS) of the DOTC/LTO, and authorized private emission testing centers. On the other hand, rebuilt motor vehicles or imported second hand completely built-up or pre-regulated vehicles retrofitted with secondhand engines will only be allowed registration or renewal of registration upon submission of a valid Certificate of Compliance to Emission Standards (CCES) issued by the DOTC. The CCES will only be issued if the exhaust emission standard for that specific motor vehicle is met, as verified by actual testing through the Motor Vehicle Inspection System (MVIS).
What will be done to smoke belching vehicles on the road? Smoke belching vehicles on the road shall be subjected to emission testing by properly equipped enforcement teams from the DOTC/LTO or its duly deputized agents. Violators will be subject to the following fines/ penalties: 1st offense- ONE THOUSAND PESOS (P1,000.00) 2nd offense-THREE THOUSAND PESOS (P3,000.00) 3rd offense-FIVE THOUSAND PESOS (P5,000.00) plus seminar on pollution management
NO MORE LEADED GASOLINE BY 2000 Fuels Clean fuels are needed to achieve clean air. The CAA thus provides for: The complete phase out of leaded gasoline before the end of the year 2000 The lowering of the sulfur content of industrial and automotive diesel, respectively, from 0.5% to 0.3% and from 0.2% to 0.05%. The lowering of aromatics in unleaded gasoline from 45% maximum to 35% maximum; and the lowering of benzene in unleaded gasoline from 4% maximum to 2% maximum. Further improvements on the fuel quality, excluding cleaner alternative fuels, will be spearheaded by the Department ofEnergy.
What are the compliance mandates for industrial sources of air pollution? All stationary sources must comply with the National Emission Standards for Source Specific Air Pollutants (NESSAP) and National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) and must secure their permit to operate, prior to operation. For new or modified sources, the Permit to Operate shall be converted to Authority to Construct. The Act also provides for the maintenance of attainment and non-attainment areas, in respective specifications as would be described shortly. Attainment areas are such where the existing ambient air quality complies with the National Ambient Air Quality Guideline Values.
For existing sources or those established prior to the effectivity date (November 25, 2000) of the Implementing Rules and Regulations in attainment areas, the following must be observed: Must comply with the NESSAP and the NAAQS, or submission of compliance program in case of non-compliance; May use emissions trading and/or averaging as part of compliance plan; Must comply within 18 months if found non-compliant; Must pay mass emission fees.
For existing sources or those established prior to the effectivity date (November 25, 2000) of the Implementing Rules and Regulations in attainment areas, the following must be observed: For new or modified sources of air pollution, in attainment areas the following must be observed: Must comply with the NESSAP and NAAQS Must have an “Authority to Construct”, which is converted to Permit to Operate Must apply “Best Available Control Technology” or such approaches, techniques or equipment which when used, result in lower air emissions, but in a cost-effective manner; Emission averaging is not allowed, but may generate emission credits for selling Must pay mass emission fees Must install continuous emission monitoring system (CEMS) for sources with potential to emit greater than or equal to 100 tons per year.
For existing sources or those established prior to the effectivity date (November 25, 2000) of the Implementing Rules and Regulations in attainment areas, the following must be observed: For existing stationary sources in non-attainment areas, the following must be observed Must comply with the NESSAP and NAAQS In case of non-compliance, compliance plan to meet the standards within 12 months is required Must pay a higher fee for the mass rate of emission (50% surcharge) Must pay a 100% surcharge (i.e., 200% of base) for any penalties and fines relating to a violation of the non-attainment provisions.
For existing sources or those established prior to the effectivity date (November 25, 2000) of the Implementing Rules and Regulations in attainment areas, the following must be observed: For new or modified sources in non-attainment areas, the following must be observed Must comply with the NESSAP and NAAQS Must install Lowest Achievable Emission Rate (LAER) control technology, or such technology or combination of technologies and process controls that result in the lowest possible emissions of a given air pollutant. The technical feasibility, rather than the cost, is the consideration, in determining the applicable LAER for a given source Must not use emissions averaging and trading for compliance Must install CEMS Must pay 50% surcharge on mass emission fees Must pay a 100% surcharge (i.e., 200% of base) for any penalties and fines relating to a violation of the non-attainment provisions.
What will be done to polluting industries A fine of not more than 100,000 for everydayof violation shall be charged against the owner of a stationary source, until such time that standards have been met. For gross violation, the penalty is imprisonment of not less than six years but not more than 10 years upon the discretion of the court. At the same time, the Pollution Adjudication Board (PAB) could close the firm through the issuance of a Cease and Desist Order.
What will be done to polluting industries There is gross violation of the law or its rules when any of the following occurs: Three or more specific offenses within a period of one year Three or more offenses within three consecutive years Blatant disregard of the orders of the PAB, such as, but not limited to the breaking of seals, padlocks and other similar devices, or operating despite the existence of an order for closure, discontinuance or cessation of operation. Irreparable or grave damage to the environment as a consequence of any violation or omission of the provisions of the Act or its IRR.
Smoking is banned beginning May 25, 2001, in any of the following locations The local government units are mandated to implement this provisions of the law Penalty to violation of this provision issix months and one day to one year imprisonment, or a fine of ten thousand pesos inside a public building enclosed public places including public vehicles and other means of transport in any enclosed area outside of one’s private residence, private place of work; or any duly designated area which will be enclosed
What can you do to help clean the air • For vehicle owners/motorists: Maintain your vehicle by changing oil regularly (every 5,000 kilometers) Keep the engine well tuned following the owner’s manual Keep tires properly inflated Plan trips and observe proper driving habits Remove unnecessary things from the trunk. Don’t overload and travel only at speed required by traffic regulations and road conditions.
What can you do to help clean the air • For commuters: Try talking to the jeep/bus/tricycle driver about the high health risks of poor vehicle maintenance and improper driving practices. Patronize mass railway transit
What can you do to help clean the air For office workers Reduce use of air conditioning and ensure that rooms are sealed Make sure that lights are energy efficient Use company vehicles wisely and make sure that they are well maintained Use natural lighting by opening window curtains at daytime.
What can you do to help clean the air • At home Use low watt bulbs or energy saving lights Limit the use of air conditioning units and keep the temperature a few degrees higher Don’t burn garbage Avoid using aerosols Properly dispose of refrigerant, refrigeration equipment and used coolant
What can you do to help clean the air FOR EVERYONE Report smoke belchers to LTO, MMDA and/or appropriate local government units. Walk or ride your bike to places Work with residential association to stop burning of garbage Spread the word about the ban of smoking in public places. Plant trees