Health Impact Assessment - Hermosa Beach - February 2014 - Draft

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The Health Impact Report - Draft for the proposed oil drilling in Hermosa Beach, CA.

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Health Impact Assessment - Hermosa Beach - February 2014 - Draft

  1. 1. HEALTH IMPACT ASSESSMENT E&B OIL DRILLING AND PRODUCTION PROJECT  DRAFT February 2014 Prepared for: Department of Community Development City of Hermosa Beach 1315 Valley Drive Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 Prepared by: McDaniel Lambert, Inc. 1608 Pacific Avenue, Suite 201 Venice, CA 90291 310‐392‐6462 Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  2. 2. Notice Regarding Comment Period This draft Health Impact Assessment has been prepared by McDaniel Lambert (an Intrinsik Company) for the City of Hermosa Beach. It is being circulated to provide residents of Hermosa Beach, and interested parties an opportunity to review the initial conclusions contained herein, and provide feedback for consideration. Currently, no laws require the use of a Health Impact Assessment (HIA) to evaluate potential public health consequences of proposed projects, changes in land use or policy decisions. However, in an effort to provide the residents of Hermosa Beach with as much information as possible on the health, as well as environmental, and economic impacts of the proposed project, the City of Hermosa Beach commissioned this HIA. This document was prepared in coordination with the Draft EIR and Cost Benefit Analysis. The Health Impact Assessment supplements the analysis of health effects presented in the Draft EIR by incorporating a broad review of public health evidence, which is not limited to regulatory thresholds. We welcome public review and comments on this document during the same timeframe as the public comment period that is mandated by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) process for the Draft EIR. Public comments received before April 14, 2014 will be reviewed and incorporated into the final version of this document. Based on comments and/or additional information received, revisions to this document may include:  Modification of impact assessments, or additional data analysis  Explanation of methods, assumptions and/or conclusions The City of Hermosa Beach does not support nor oppose the proposed project. This report presents a neutral and unbiased perspective on the potential health impacts of the proposed project to the City. Comments for consideration in the Final Health Impact Assessment can be submitted to: E‐mail: oilproject@hermosabch.org or via mail/in person to: Attn: Ken Robertson Community Development Director City of Hermosa Beach 1315 Valley Drive Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 (310) 318‐0242 Please provide comments no later than April 14, 2014. Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  3. 3. TABLE OF CONTENTS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ................................................................................................................................... i  1.0  Introduction .................................................................................................................................1  1.1  City of Hermosa Beach ......................................................................................................................... 1  1.2  Oil Development and Production Activities ................................................................................ 1  1.3  Project Description ................................................................................................................................ 3  1.4  HIA Process and Role ............................................................................................................................ 5  2.0  Screening .......................................................................................................................................7  3.0  Scoping ...........................................................................................................................................8  3.1  Stakeholder Engagement .................................................................................................................... 8  3.2  Pathways ................................................................................................................................................. 10  3.2.1  Air Quality ...................................................................................................................................... 13  3.2.2  Water and Soil Quality .............................................................................................................. 15  3.2.3  Noise and Light ............................................................................................................................ 17  3.2.4  Traffic ............................................................................................................................................... 19  3.2.5  Community Livability ............................................................................................................... 21  4.0  Assessment ................................................................................................................................ 23  4.1  Air Quality ............................................................................................................................................... 26  4.1.1  Air Quality and Health .............................................................................................................. 26  4.1.2  Current Conditions .................................................................................................................... 32  . 4.1.3  Projected Impact ......................................................................................................................... 36  4.2  Water and Soil Quality ....................................................................................................................... 44  4.2.1  Water, Soil and Health .............................................................................................................. 44  4.2.2  Current Conditions .................................................................................................................... 45  . 4.2.3  Projected Impact ......................................................................................................................... 46  4.3  Noise and Light ..................................................................................................................................... 48  4.3.1  Noise, Light and Health ............................................................................................................ 48  4.3.2  Current Conditions .................................................................................................................... 51  . 4.3.3  Projected Impact ......................................................................................................................... 52  4.4  Traffic ....................................................................................................................................................... 57  . 4.4.1  Traffic and Health ....................................................................................................................... 57  4.4.2  Current Conditions .................................................................................................................... 58  . 4.4.3  Projected Impact ......................................................................................................................... 60  4.5  Community Livability ........................................................................................................................ 66  4.5.1  Community Livability and Health ........................................................................................ 66  4.5.2  Current Conditions .................................................................................................................... 69  . 4.5.3  Projected Impact ......................................................................................................................... 71  5.0  Conclusions ............................................................................................................................... 74  6.0  References ................................................................................................................................. 84  Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  4. 4. Figure 1‐1 Figure 3‐1 Figure 3‐2 Figure 3‐3 Figure 3‐4 Figure 3‐5 Figure 3‐6 Figure 3‐7 Figure 4‐1 Figure 4‐2 Figure 4‐3 Figure 4‐4 Figure 4‐5 Figure 4‐6 Table ES‐1 Table 1‐1 Table 4‐1 Table 4‐2 Table 4‐3 Table 4‐4 Table 4‐5 Table 4‐6 Table 4‐7 Table 4‐8 Table 4‐9 Table 5‐1 Appendix A Appendix B Appendix C Appendix D Appendix E Appendix F Appendix G Appendix H FIGURES Proposed Project Site and Proximity to Schools Distribution of Survey Participants by Place of Residence Social‐Ecological Health Framework Air Quality Pathway Diagram Water and Soil Quality Pathway Diagram Noise Pathway Diagram Traffic Pathway Diagram Community Livability Pathway Diagram Local NOx Emission Sources Local PM Emission Sources Local NOx Emission Sources with Project Safe Route to School Pedestrian Sidewalk, Valley Dr./ 6th St. Project Site Location and TIA Study Area TABLES Health Impact Assessment Summary Ranking of Environmental and Health Areas of Concern 2008 LA Basin Emissions for Oil and Gas Development and Production Activities (tons per day) Summary of Current, Project‐related and Total NOx Emissions Summary of Current, Project‐related and Total PM10 Emissions Summary of Change in PM10 Concentrations and Mortality Summary of Cancer Burden and Change in Hermosa Beach Incidence Rates Summary of Odor Assessment Summary of Existing Noise Levels Around the Project Site (Overall Average Leq) Project Trip Generation Estimates Roadway Segment Analysis, 6th St from Valley Dr to Hermosa Ave. Health Impact Assessment Summary APPENDICES Summary of Los Angeles Urban Oil Drilling Sites Scoping Checklist Public Comments and Input to the HIA Process Health Impact Assessment Community Survey Baseline Health Assessment Quality of Life Committee Presentation Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry ToxFAQs CHAPIS Gridded Emissions Output Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  5. 5. Glossary of Terms, Acronyms, and Abbreviations Acronym or Term ACS Explanation American Cancer Society AERMOD Air modeling program used in EIR AES AES Redondo Beach Power Plant AML Acute myelogenous leukemia, also called acute myeloid leukemia BCHD Beach Cities Health District, serving Manhattan, Hermosa, and Redondo Beaches Acronym for benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes, compounds commonly found in petroleum derivatives California Environmental Protection Agency BTEX Cal/EPA CBA CEQA Cost‐benefit analysis, a method of considering the advantages and disadvantages of a project by converting all outcomes into monetary values California Environmental Quality Act, legally requires EIR CHAPIS Community Air Pollution Information System City City of Hermosa Beach Community Dialogue CUP dB A group of 15‐30 community members engaged in activities to help define the quality of life and vision for the future of Hermosa Conditional Use Permit approved on August 12, 1993, which the proposed project must comply with decibel dBA A‐weighted decibel, to approximate human sensitivity to sound DDT Pesticide banned by the USEPA in 1972 due to environmental effects Determinants of health E&B Factors that contribute to the health of individuals or communities EIR E&B Natural Resources Management Corporation H2S Environmental Impact Report, the analysis of the environmental effects of a project and reasonable alternatives to it, mandated by CEQA Hydrogen sulfide HBEF Hermosa Beach Education Foundation HHRA Human Health Risk Assessment HIA Health Impact Assessment, a combination of procedures, methods, and tools by which a project can be judged as to its potential effects on the health of a population International Agency for Research on Cancer IARC Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  6. 6. Acronym or Term Incidence rate Leq LOS MTCO2e NOx Explanation A measure of the new cases of illness during a specified time period Equivalent sound level, or the average noise level over a period of time Level of service, related to the degree of traffic congestion at intersections Multiple Air Toxics Exposure Study III Refers to the presence of disease in an individual or population A measure of the frequency of disease in a defined population during a specified time interval A measure of the frequency of death in a defined population during a specified time interval Metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions Oxides of Nitrogen OEHHA California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment PAHs Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons PCE Passenger car equivalence PCB Polychlorinated biphenyl, PCBs are no longer commercially produced in the US due to toxicity Pacific Coast Highway, the most trafficked roadway in Hermosa Beach MATES III Morbidity Morbidity rate Mortality rate PCH PM ppb Particulate matter, particles with a diameter smaller than 10 µg are referred to as PM10, and particles with a diameter smaller than 2.5 µg are known as PM2.5 Parts per billion ppm Parts per million Proposed project SCAQMD SIR Site TMDL TPH TIA USEPA µg/m3 VOCs Proposed E&B oil drilling and production project Southern California Air Quality Monitoring District Standardized incidence ratio, quotient of observed and expected number of cases (e.g., cancer cases) Proposed project site, at the current City Maintenance Yard Total maximum daily load, a regulatory water quality requirement Total petroleum hydrocarbons Traffic impact analysis United States Environmental Protection Agency Microgram per meter cubed Volatile organic compounds WSB WHO Walking school bus World Health Organization Draft Health Impact Assessment ‐ Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA
  7. 7. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY To inform the Hermosa voters, this assessment focused on potential health impacts associated with the Applicant’s proposed oil drilling and production project and the Environmental Impact Report’s proposed mitigation measures. The benefit of this Health Impact Assessment is that is an evaluation focused on how the proposed project could affect health status, health behaviors and social and economic resources. The HIA supplements the analysis of health effects presented in the Draft EIR by incorporating a broad review of public health evidence, which is not limited to regulatory thresholds. Health Impact Assessment consists of these five essential components: (1)screening – deciding whether or not an HIA would be valuable and feasible, (2)scoping – determining health issues for analysis, (3)assessment – using data, professional expertise, and scientific research to assess the magnitude and likelihood of potential health impacts considering the mitigations, (4)reporting – synthesizing the assessment findings into this HIA report and communicating the results in public meetings, and (5)monitoring (if the proposed project is approved) – tracking the potential impacts or benefits of project decisions on health determinants and health status. In the scoping step, existing health and environmental measures for the City of Hermosa Beach from regulatory agency monitoring and published reports were documented in the Baseline Health Assessment (see Appendix E). Based on community input, review of the project description, and available scientific evidence, five areas of health focus were assessed: air quality, water and soil quality, noise and light, traffic and community livability. Within each area of health focus, potential health determinants and outcomes were identified and assessed through a review of the scientific literature, consultation with an engineering expert, information collected in the EIR process, and secondary data analysis. Each of the potential health impacts and benefits were characterized with a numeric rank based on whether the proposed project may result in a positive or negative effect, and based on the geographic extent, likelihood, vulnerable populations, duration and frequency of exposure, and magnitude of the health impact. The lowest possible rank is 6 and the highest possible rank is 15, with a negative (‐) number representing negative health effects and a positive (+) number representing positive health effects. The numeric ranks do not represent a quantitative estimate of risk, but are provided for the purpose of describing the relative importance of each potential health impact compared to the other potential health impacts in this HIA. The health determinants that produced rankings on the higher end of the negative spectrum (ranking from ‐16 to ‐11) include air emissions (oxides of nitrogen, particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, and odor‐releasing compounds), noise and lighting disturbances, traffic injury, access to green spaces, and social cohesion. The health determinants that produced rankings on the lower end of the negative spectrum (ranking Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -i-
  8. 8. from ‐10 to ‐6) include greenhouse gas emissions, surface water, soil deposition, a spill/blowout event, and property values. Mitigation measures proposed in the EIR slightly decrease the ranking for odor, soil deposition, and traffic injury, but otherwise did not change the relative importance of the potential health impacts. The health determinants that produced positive rankings include lighting safety, community resources for education, and political involvement. The characterization of each health determinant is provided in Table ES‐1. In summary, major findings from the HIA include: Air Quality    Evidence in the literature suggests negative health impacts of priority pollutant air emissions: Increases in nitrogen oxides and particulate matter in air can increase mortality rates, and respiratory and cardiovascular disease rates. Exposure to particulate matter air emissions from the proposed project activities involving fuel combustion (during Phases 2 and 4) may lead to an increase in mortality of 0 to 1.6 people per year. Increased NO2 emissions from microturbines in Phase 4, may lead to an increase in childhood asthma cases of up to six additional cases per year. The assessments of increased particulate matter and NO2 emissions were health protective by assuming that all residents in Hermosa Beach will be exposed to the pollution concentrations predicted for residences closest to the proposed site. Hydrogen sulfide odor emissions will likely have negative health impacts: Odor sensitivity varies greatly from person to person. Potential health impacts from odor emissions range from nausea and headaches to mental health effects. Greenhouse gas emissions are not likely to directly impact health: Hermosa has low susceptibility to the local effects of global change both due to current climate conditions and the ability of the community to manage impacts from a changing climate. Additionally, goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions suggest that greenhouse gas emissions from the project could be offset by alternative measures, which could be further explored. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -ii-
  9. 9. TABLE ES‐1. CHARACTERIZATION OF HEALTH IMPACTS Impact Direction Air Quality Oxides of Nitrogen Negative Particulate Matter Negative Volatile Organic Compounds Negative Hydrogen Sulfide and Odor Negative Greenhouse Gas Emissions Negative Water and Soil Surface Water Negative Soil Deposition Negative Spill/Blowout Event Negative Noise, Vibration and Lighting Noise Disturbances Negative Lighting Disturbances Negative Lighting Safety Positive Traffic Traffic Injury Negative Physical Activity Negative Community Livability Property values Negative Community Resources – Negative Green Space Access Community Resources – Positive Education Social Cohesion Negative Political involvement Positive Likelihood of health impact Magnitude of health impact Rank EIR Mitigated Project Rank Geographic extent Vulnerable populations Duration Frequency Community‐wide Community‐wide Community‐wide Community‐wide Global Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Long Long Long Long Long Possible Likely Possible Likely Unlikely Moderate Severe Severe Moderate Low ‐13 ‐15 ‐14 ‐14 ‐10 Same Same Same ‐13* Same Community‐wide Localized Community‐wide Yes Yes Yes Short Short Short Possible Possible Unlikely Low Moderate Severe ‐9 ‐9 ‐10 Same ‐8** Same Community‐wide Localized Localized Localized Localized Yes Yes No Medium Long Long Likely Unlikely Possible Moderate Moderate Moderate ‐13 ‐11 +11 Same Same Same Yes Yes Long Long Possible Possible Severe Low ‐13 ‐11 ‐12*** Same None Yes Long Long Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Infrequent Infrequent Infrequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Frequent Possible Possible Low Moderate ‐10 ‐12 Same Same Community‐wide Yes Long Infrequent Likely Low +12 Same Community‐wide Community‐wide Yes None Medium Medium Frequent Frequent Possible Possible Low Low ‐11 +10 Same Same Localized Localized *Hydrogen sulfide and odor mitigation measures would decrease frequency to ‘infrequent’ **The health screening level proposed in the EIR and additional soil sampling decrease the potential negative health impact by changing the likelihood to ‘unlikely.’ ***Mitigation measures proposed in the EIR (e.g. increased crossing‐guard presence, additional warning signs and lights) would reduce likelihood to ‘unlikely’. Attribute Key ‐ each attribute is summed resulting in health rankings ranging from 6 to 15, with a direction of either positive (+) or negative (‐): Geographic Extent: Classified as global (0 points), localized (close proximity to the project, 1 point) or community‐wide (across Hermosa Beach, 2 points). Vulnerable Populations: Classified as no (affects all subpopulations evenly, 1 point) or yes (disproportionately sensitive populations impacts, 2 points). Duration: Classified as short (less than a month, 1 point), medium (more than a month and less than a year, 2 points) or long (more than a year, 3 points). Frequency: Classified as infrequent (periodically, or rarely, 1 point), or frequent (potential for constant or multiple exposures, 2 points). Likelihood/Strength of Evidence: Classified as unlikely (little evidence that health impact or benefit could occur as a result of the proposed project, 1 point), possible (logically plausible that health effects may occur, 2 points), or likely (evidence suggests health effects commonly occur in similar projects, 3 points). Magnitude/Severity: Classified as low (health effects can be easily managed and do not require treatment, 1 point), moderate (health effects that require treatment or medical attention and are reversible, 2 points), or severe (health effects that are chronic, irreversible or fatal, 3 points).
  10. 10. Water and Soil Quality  Containment strategy will likely eliminate health impact of hazardous chemicals in surface water runoff: Walls and berms will contain storm water and spills within the project site, therefore the public will not likely come into contact with chemicals in surface water runoff.  Insufficient data to quantify the contaminants currently present in surface soil: Soil particulates containing hazardous chemicals can be transported through the air to nearby residential areas and parks, especially during high winds and construction activities. Lead in soil may pose a health risk, however additional sampling is needed before site preparation occurs in the first phase of the project. Additional soil sampling is to be conducted in Spring 2014 to fully characterize the contaminants present in soil at the proposed project Site.  Evidence from other crude oil spills and well blowout events indicate the low likelihood of long‐term negative health impacts: Short‐term exposure to crude oil can lead to headaches, eye/skin irritation, respiratory conditions, anxiety, and depression. If a spill reaches the Pacific Ocean, local fishing would be negatively impacted. Although a well blowout has a very low probability, such an event could result in fatalities. Noise and Light  Evidence in the literature suggests negative impacts of noise emissions: Noise is strongly linked to sleep disturbance, cardiovascular disease, stress, and decreased student achievement. Increases in nighttime noise during drilling, testing, and production activities will likely change the quality of sleep of nearby residential neighborhoods. Pipeline construction noise will reach levels above 70 dBA, which can increase risk of hypertension and may impact schools in the vicinity of the proposed pipeline route.  Mitigation measures and uncertainties associated with nighttime lighting plan: Light disturbances are associated with sleep disturbance and decreased melatonin hormone production. The proposed project has a general description of downcast lighting that is hooded and shielded, which would reduce the potential for negative health impacts. Because the brightness of the lighting is not specified, the possible level of glare into the surrounding area could not be predicted.  Evidence in the literature suggests positive impacts of nighttime lighting: Additional lighting may improve the perception of safety and contribute to more physical activity in the immediate vicinity of the Site at nighttime. Traffic  Insufficient data on pedestrian and bicyclist frequency to quantify the traffic injury impacts from truck traffic: Children and elderly are more vulnerable to the Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -iv-
  11. 11.  increased risk of traffic injury. Although Valley is a highly traveled sidewalk, no data are currently available to quantify the existing number of pedestrians and bicyclists that frequently travel by Valley Drive and 6th Street. The mitigation measures in the EIR will reduce the risk of traffic injury. Traffic safety and perceived traffic safety can impact health by decreasing physical activity levels: Residents may choose to avoid walking by areas affected by truck traffic, because they feel their safety is compromised. Since the community values a walkable environment, it is possible that residents will find an alternate route to walk. Community Livability     Property values and stress: An actual or perceived loss in property values may cause stress among homeowners. Evidence in the literature supports an association between access to community resources, physical health, and mental health: Perceived hazards in the natural environment may decrease green space use and lead to negative health impacts, including higher rates of obesity, heart disease, and psychological distress. Revenue for schools: Education is one of the most powerful predictors of health. Quality of education has positive social and economic health impacts. Project revenue that could be set aside for schools would be a small proportion of current private donations made to schools on an annual basis. This suggests that alternative avenues for offsetting state funding deficits could be explored. Evidence in the literature suggests negative and positive impacts of the opportunity for residents to vote on the oil and gas project: Community participation in voting on the settlement has created negative health impacts of stress and disruption in social cohesion. On the other hand, political engagement may create positive health impacts, because individuals are able to exercise control over decisions that affect their health and well‐being. Based on these findings, the proposed oil drilling and production project could result in negative health impacts ranging from localized to community‐wide, however the extent of some of these impacts is uncertain and could not be quantified. Given the limited data available and uncertainties in some instances, decision‐makers (Hermosa Beach voters) may want to consider additional options such as:  Air monitoring to verify model assumptions: Air emissions were calculated using conservative assumptions based on standard operations and regional ambient air data. While the estimated project impact on air quality is likely to be conservative, there are uncertainties associated with various model assumptions. Additional upwind and downwind monitoring of dust and key contaminants would allow for ongoing evaluation during construction and other project‐related activities. Upwind Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -v-
  12. 12. and downwind monitoring would need to be done for a period of time of approximately six months before any project activities to understand the normal background variations.  Follow‐up community health assessment: Hermosa Beach is recognized as a healthy city with favorable demographic health indicators and mortality rates, compared to other cities in California and Los Angeles County. If the project is approved, health statistics reported in county and state‐wide databases could be monitored to assess whether or not any changes from baseline occur. However, there are limited data available to quantify potential health impacts of the project on sleep disturbance, stress, social cohesion and other quality of life factors. A community health survey could be used as a tool to establish current baseline conditions, and to monitor whether health status changes during the project.  Alternate funding sources: Oil revenue has the potential to positively impact health through improving school programs, as well as other community resources not addressed in this assessment. The financial working committee in the Community Dialogue group identified numerous opportunities in Hermosa Beach to raise additional revenue for desired projects in the City. Alternate opportunities for revenue should be further explored. Regardless of whether the proposed project moves forward, the City of Hermosa Beach should continue to prioritize public health considerations during decision‐making processes to ensure the well‐being of community members into the future. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -vi-
  13. 13. 1.0 Introduction Under the settlement agreement that ended litigation with Macpherson Oil Company, an election will be held to allow the City of Hermosa Beach voters to decide whether to repeal the existing ban on oil drilling in the city limits. The terms of the settlement agreement provide that, if voters agree to lift the ban, the City will enter into a development agreement with E&B Natural Resources Management Corporation (E&B) to develop an oil drilling and production facility at the City Maintenance Yard (the Site) and the City will owe E&B $3.5 million. If the voters do not lift the ban on oil, the City of Hermosa Beach (the City) would owe E&B a total of $17.5 million. In order to inform voters about the potential economic, social, environmental, and health impacts and/or benefits of E&B’s proposed oil drilling and production project, the City is conducting this Health Impact Assessment (HIA), in addition to a Cost‐Benefit Analysis (CBA) and Environmental Impact Report (EIR). The EIR complies with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), while the CBA and HIA are stand‐alone documents the City elected to complete in order to provide community members with additional information on the proposed oil project. The HIA also provides the opportunity for health input into the economic and environmental assessments. If the project is approved by Hermosa Beach voters, the oversight agencies that will participate in environmental and safety reviews include the California Coastal Commission, the State Lands Commission, the South Coast Air Quality Management District and the State Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources. 1.1 City of Hermosa Beach Founded in 1907, Hermosa Beach is known as “The Best Little Beach City”. Hermosa Beach has a population of approximately 20,000 people, with a high proportion of residents between the age of 25 and 50 (US Census, 2013). The City is carrying out a Community Dialogue process to identify the values and long‐term goals for Hermosa Beach. A series of workshops has been conducted to engage local residents and business owners in describing priorities and building a framework for decision‐making. The HIA team has been participating in and coordinating with the Community Dialogue process in order to incorporate key quality of life aspects, as identified by Hermosa Beach community members, into the evaluation of overall community health and well‐being. 1.2 Oil Development and Production Activities The current boom in domestic crude oil production is approaching the historical high achieved in 1970 of 9.6 million barrels per day (EIA 2013). Projections and analysis summarized in the Energy Information Administration’s Annual Energy Outlook 2014 Release Overview attribute the growth in domestic production to improvements in Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -1-
  14. 14. advanced technologies for crude oil and natural gas production. Specifically for U.S. production of crude oil, projections for higher production volumes result mainly from increased onshore oil production, primarily from formations with low permeability. California remains one to the top producers of crude oil in the nation, accounting for almost one‐tenth of the total U.S. production (EIA 2013). Petroleum reservoirs are concentrated in geologic basins along the Pacific Coast and in the Central Valley. Los Angeles is considered the most urban oil field in the country, with a long history of the petroleum industry operating in nonindustrial areas (CLUI 2010). Due to the high cost of land in the Los Angeles basin, there has been economic incentive to develop modern drilling technology that allows oil wells to be concentrated into smaller areas. Directional drilling techniques decrease the industry’s surface footprint while increasing the subsurface drillable area. Since industrial processes are generally not desired in densely populated areas due to environmental and health concerns, many oil drilling sites in Los Angeles have incorporated mitigation measures (e.g. noise muffling, visual barriers, closed‐loop systems) to help reduce the potential impacts to surrounding communities. There are 34 known active oil fields in the Los Angeles Basin spread out across the regions of Inglewood, Westside and Downtown, Eastern Los Angeles and Inland, the Coast and South Bay, Harbor and Long Beach, and the South Coast (see Appendix A). The active oil fields vary greatly in size and in oil production volumes. Small fields like Chino‐Soquet produce just over a thousand barrels of oil per year while Wilmington, the most productive oil field in the Los Angeles Basin, produces about 3.5 million barrels per year from 1,300 active wells. Many of the wells operate in densely populated urban areas. For example, in the Beverly Hills Field oil is accessed from three urban well sites, including one within Beverly Hills High School and another on Pico Blvd hidden from view by a windowless four‐walled structure that appears to be an office building to the passerby. Given the long history of oil drilling in Los Angeles, the wells and pumpjacks were often present before suburban housing developments encroached upon drilling leases. Appendix A summarizes some of the known health concerns associated with urban drilling sites. Various health and environmental concerns surround production at the Inglewood oil field, which covers 950 acres in urbanized Los Angeles. In 2006, noxious gases entrained in drilling muds were released and detected by neighbors more than 1,000 feet from drilling activities. As a result of several investigations, a 2011 CEQA lawsuit settlement required the operator to: reduce drilling of new wells, increase air quality monitoring, and adhere to more stringent noise limits. Additionally, LA County was required to perform mandatory health assessments with environmental justice components. Other health concerns from urban oil drilling relate to surface methane seeps, noise and odor, and land subsidence. Oil seeps from the Salt Lake oil field located beneath Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -2-
  15. 15. the Fairfax district caused a 1985 methane explosion at a clothing store, injuring over 20 people. Concern about the potential for future fire and explosions led the City of Los Angeles to impose requirements for methane venting and monitoring. This HIA evaluates potential health impacts that could result from oil drilling and production activities in the City of Hermosa Beach according to the site‐specific project description, as summarized in Section 1.3 below. 1.3 Project Description The proposed E&B Oil Development Project (proposed project) consists of 30 production wells on a 1.3‐acre site located on the current City Maintenance Yard property (the Site) at the corner of Valley Drive and 6th Street in the City of Hermosa Beach (the City). For reference, Figure 1‐1 shows the Site location in relation to the public, private, and preschools in the City. E&B’s proposed project would also involve the installation of underground pipelines to transport the processed oil and gas. The complete description of the proposed project is provided in the Project Application and supporting documents (E&B 2012, 2013a,b). Briefly, the proposed project consists of the following objectives:  Develop the proposed project consistent with the 1993 Conditional Use Permit and the March 2, 2012 Settlement Agreement, with the utilization of directional drilling techniques from the Project site, which is the current City Maintenance Yard;  Maximize oil and gas production from the Torrance Oil Field within the City’s jurisdiction, thereby maximizing the economic benefits to the City;  Provide an oil and gas development project on the Site that utilizes the latest technology and operational advancements related to safety and production efficiency in order to provide a project that would be safe and would meet the applicable environmental requirements;  Conduct construction and drilling activities on the project site incorporating technological advancements, operational practices, and design features related to air quality, odors, noise, hazards, and water quality to minimize the potential impacts on the adjacent community and the environment;  Provide landscaping, hardscaping, signage, lighting, and other design features to minimize the visual effects of the proposed project on the adjacent community; and  Implement operational practices and incorporate design features to provide safe vehicular ingress and egress during temporary construction activities and the ongoing operation of the proposed project. To accomplish these objectives, the proposed project would occur in four phases, as described below. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -3-
  16. 16. Figure 1‐1: Site Location and Proximity to Schools Proposed Project Site Source: California Department of Public Health <http://gis.cdph.ca.gov/cnn2.0/cnn.html?mapid=4587189> Phase 1 – Site Preparation and Construction (6 to 7 months): The primary purpose of Phase 1 is to prepare the Site for drilling and testing, as well as the subsequent phases of the proposed project. Construction activities include clearing and grading the Site, constructing retaining walls and the well cellar, installing fencing and electrical equipment, and placing existing overhead utilities underground. At this time, the City Maintenance Yard would be relocated to a temporary or permanent location. The most disruptive construction activities during this phase are expected to be demolition of existing infrastructure on the Site and construction of the well cellar. Construction activities will also require truck trips in order to deliver and remove construction equipment, which Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -4-
  17. 17. would utilize designated truck routes in the cities of Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach and Torrance. Phase 2 – Drilling and Testing (10 to 13 months): This phase will involve drilling and testing of wells in order to estimate the potential productivity and economic viability of the proposed project. The primary construction and drilling activities include installing a temporary trailer on the northeast corner of the site, setting up the drill rig and other production equipment, drilling the test wells, and operation activities. The drill rig would operate for 24 hours per day, 7 days per week for an estimated 120 days during this phase. A 35‐foot‐high barrier wall would be constructed around the perimeter of the Site during all drilling activities. Phase 3 – Final Design and Construction (16 months): If Phase 2 determines that the proposed project is economically feasible, Phase 3 would be carried out to prepare the Site for permanent oil and gas production facilities and to construct offsite pipelines. After removing the temporary production equipment from Phase 2 and preparing the Site for earthmoving activities, the Remedial Action Plan would be implemented to address metal and petroleum‐contaminated soil and groundwater at the Site. This phase would involve extending and completing the construction of the cement well cellar (to be approximately 8 feet wide by 120 feet long by 12 feet deep), placing a small office building onsite, and constructing sound barrier walls. The permanent oil production facility will include tanks, vessels, piping, pumps, filters and corresponding metering equipment. The Site will be paved and the facility will be designed in a manner to capture all liquids, including rainwater, in designated containment areas. Street improvements (e.g. new curbs, gutters, sidewalks) will be made along 6th Street and Valley Drive. Phase 4 – Development and Operations (approximately 30 years): Phase 4 will maximize oil and gas recovery through the construction of an 87‐foot high drill rig, the drilling of an additional 30 wells and through the continuous operation of the proposed project. It is estimated that it will take two weeks to set up the drill rig, and two and a half years to drill the remaining 30 wells. Facility operations and maintenance will be continuous for approximately 30 years, with five re‐drills occurring during any given year. Over the life of the proposed project, active wells will require periodic maintenance, which will be accomplished by utilizing a 110‐foot high “workover” rig (during weekdays 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. only). 1.4 HIA Process and Role This report considers the potential health impacts of the four phases of this proposed project by evaluating social, economic, and environmental factors specific to the local community. As described above in the outline of Phase 1 (Section 1.3), accomplishing the Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -5-
  18. 18. objectives of E&B’s proposed project necessitates relocating the City Maintenance Yard to a temporary or permanent location. Any potential impacts of moving the City Maintenance Yard are considered independent of the proposed project and are not addressed in this HIA. In accordance with the Guide for Health Impact Assessment (CDPH 2010) and the National Research Council Committee Report on the Role of Health Impact Assessment (2011), the HIA consists of these five essential components: 1. Screening – Deciding whether or not an HIA would be valuable and feasible. 2. Scoping – Determining health issues for analysis, the temporal and spatial boundaries for analysis, and research methods to be employed. 3. Assessment – Using data, professional expertise, and scientific research to assess the magnitude and likelihood of potential health impacts. This includes identifying the significance, any appropriate mitigations and/or design alternatives. 4. Reporting – Synthesizing the assessment findings and communicating the results in written reports, fact sheets, and public meetings. 5. Monitoring – Tracking the potential impacts or benefits of project decisions on health determinants and health status. Overall, this HIA is part of the City’s efforts to evaluate the various social, economic environmental and health impacts of the proposed oil project. The objective of this HIA is to inform community members of potential health impacts associated with the proposed project. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -6-
  19. 19. 2.0 Screening The screening step determines whether to conduct an HIA and begins to define specific objectives by considering potential project impacts to public health and defining community vulnerabilities. Several factors are considered, including the value of the HIA, the feasibility and capacity to conduct an HIA, and the openness of the decision‐making process (CDPH 2010). The primary objective of this HIA is to identify and inform voters of potential health impacts and/or benefits of the proposed project. A better understanding of the likelihood, magnitude and extent of potential health impacts is needed, and the City of Hermosa Beach is committed to communicating the findings of the HIA to facilitate the decision‐making process. The availability of existing regulatory frameworks to evaluate health impacts is also taken into consideration when determining the need for an HIA. The proposed E&B oil drilling and production project is subject to regulation under CEQA, which requires an EIR. While CEQA legally requires health‐based standards be addressed in the EIR, traditionally EIRs are not designed to comprehensively address health impacts, including social and economic determinants of health. The benefit of this HIA is that it is an evaluation focused on how the proposed project could affect health status, health behaviors and social and economic resources necessary for public health. The proposal for oil and gas development in the City of Hermosa Beach has generated considerable controversy. In an Open House in September 2013 and a public meeting in October 2013, residents expressed a variety of concerns about the potential health impacts of the proposed project. Health concerns associated with oil and gas facilities, raised by the community, included:  Physical – hazards resulting from accidents, malfunctions and emergencies  Environmental – adverse impacts to the quality of air, water, soil or food  Socioeconomic – impacts to community resources  Psychological – mental health impacts  Other – cumulative effects, political stress of the decision‐making process The questions and comments received at the public meeting regarding these health topics reinforced the City’s decision to conduct an HIA. Therefore, it was determined that conducting an HIA on the proposed project would add value and serve to increase the consideration of health in the decision‐making process. The residents of Hermosa Beach will be voting on whether to lift the ban on oil drilling in November 2014, and will have information from the HIA, EIR and CBA available to help make their decision. The HIA process began more than a year before the vote in order to allow time for adequate stakeholder engagement, review of scientific literature, and communication of results before the election is held. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -7-
  20. 20. 3.0 Scoping The initial considerations raised in the screening step are further defined in the scoping step, as the areas of focus and HIA objectives are more clearly identified. The scoping process followed the Guide for Health Impact Assessment (CDPH 2010), which outlines the process for identifying priority issues, research questions and methods. Additional guidance documents were used in the development of this HIA, including the Technical Guidance for Health Impact Assessment in Alaska (2011), because many of the HIAs in Alaska have been conducted to evaluate potential impacts from proposed oil and gas development projects. Lastly, tools and resources provided by Human Impact Partners, a nationwide organization dedicated to building the capacity of HIAs, supplemented the scoping process through its searchable database of scientific articles on social, economic and environmental determinants of health. Since the proposed project can impact a range of health outcomes in the community, a comprehensive scoping checklist that considers the likelihood and magnitude of impacts was used to begin this step (see Appendix B). Through stakeholder participation and review of scientific evidence supporting potential health impacts, this list was further refined in the scoping step. 3.1 Stakeholder Engagement Broad participation by stakeholders in the community is a key component of HIA, and the scoping step in particular. Community participation and expert consultations ensure that the most important issues and best evidence are included in the analysis. Health determinants were prioritized based on both key issues identified by community members, health research and professional experience. Community input following a public Open House and HIA scoping meeting were carefully considered. The compilation of written‐feedback is included in Appendix C. In addition to the Open House and public meeting to solicit public input, an online survey was conducted to understand the key issues of concern among community members. The survey was announced at the public input meeting, and posted on the City’s website. The survey consisted of four multiple choice questions, and a copy of the survey is provided in Appendix D. The questions asked where respondents live, whether there is concern about health impacts of the proposed project, what potential health impacts are of most concern, and if the level of concern depends on the various project phases. A total of 292 community members responded. The majority of the survey participants live in Hermosa Beach near the Site of the proposed project (South of Pier Avenue and West of Pacific Coast Highway, see Figure 3‐1). Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -8-
  21. 21. Survey Question 1: Where do you live? 50% 45% 40% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Hermosa Beach ‐ Hermosa Beach ‐ Hermosa Beach ‐ Hermosa Beach ‐ North of Pier South of Pier North of Pier South of Pier Ave and West of Ave and West of Ave and East of Ave and East of the PCH the PCH the PCH the PCH Manhattan Beach FIGURE 3‐1. DISTRIBUTION OF SURVEY PARTICIPANTS BY PLACE OF RESIDENCE Redondo Beach Of the 292 survey participants, nearly all community members (93%) are concerned about the potential health impacts of the proposed project. The remaining 7% of survey participants are either not concerned about potential health impacts or are not sure. For a total of 18 topics, survey participants ranked their level of concern as “very concerned”, “somewhat concerned”, “not concerned” or “no opinion”; participants were also given the option to specify “other” concerns. Overall, survey respondents are very concerned about all of the health and environmental topics (responses of “I am very concerned” ranged from 62% to 89% for individual topics). Table 3‐1 (presented below) ranks the concerns of respondents in order of greatest concern. The issues of most concern include explosions/spills, impacts to the ocean or beach, soil contamination, air quality, odor and surface water contamination. Possible vibration impacts, parking problems and lights are also priority issues, but overall concern is lower relative to other issues. A total of 73 survey participants also specified other areas of concern that are not listed in Table 3‐1. Among the most common free response answers, concerns include hydrogen sulfide, cancer, traffic accidents, and sensitivity of children to environmental exposures. The complete list of survey responses is included in Appendix D. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -9-
  22. 22. TABLE 3‐1. RANKING OF ENVIRONMENTAL AND HEALTH AREAS OF CONCERN Answer Options  Explosions/Spills/Accidents  Potential impacts to the ocean   Soil contamination  Air quality issues   Odor  Surface water contamination  Truck traffic  Drinking water contamination  Property values  Noise  Land subsidence (sinking)  Less access to community spaces   Earthquakes  Image of the City  Vibration  Parking problems  Lights  Very  concerned  254  259  249  247  248  244  230  234  223  220  212  210  207  210  204  195  177  Somewhat  Not  No  concerned  concerned  opinion  23  6  1  16  10  1  27  8  1  26  9  1  25  8  2  22  11  3  45  6  2  30  15  4  33  19  4  39  21  3  43  16  6  51  16  5  55  20  2  41  24  4  47  25  6  58  23  6  63  32  6  Rating  Average  1.13  1.14  1.16  1.17  1.17  1.19  1.22  1.25  1.3  1.32  1.34  1.35  1.36  1.36  1.41  1.43  1.52  The last question of the survey asked if the level of concern differs based on the phase of the proposed project. The responses reflected a higher level of concern associated with both drilling phases – Phase 2 and Phase 4. Comparatively, the survey respondents are less concerned with the construction phases, Phase 1 and 3. The assessment in Section 4 will reference the corresponding project phase and/or duration of potential environmental exposure. 3.2 Pathways A complex interplay of factors determines the health of individuals and communities. Environmental exposures can influence individual behaviors, social networks, living conditions and culture in local and global communities. Therefore, determinants of health include the social and economic environment, in addition to the physical environment and an individual’s characteristics and behaviors. There are many models that have recognized the social‐economic influences on health, and one example provided by the federal government’s national health objective, Healthy People 2020, is shown in Figure 3‐2 below. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -10-
  23. 23. FIGURE 3‐2. SOCIAL‐ECOLOGICAL HEALTH FRAMEWORK Source: Healthy People 2020 (USHHS 2008) In the scoping process, pathway diagrams were created to understand the potential health impacts and benefits of approving the proposed project on social, economic, physical, psychological and other health‐related quality of life outcomes. Public input and a review of other oil and gas development projects in the Los Angeles area were taken into consideration to further refine the areas of health focus for this evaluation. Due to the large variety in designs for oil and gas development projects, a professional engineer with over 15 years of experience in the oil and gas industry was consulted to identify specific vulnerabilities of this proposed project as described in the E&B project application (2012, 2013a,b). Additionally, key case studies and review articles of health assessments related to oil and/or gas development taken into consideration during the development of pathways for this HIA, including: 1. Northeast National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska Final Supplement Integrated Activity Plan/Environmental Impact Statement (BLM 2008) 2. Health Impact Assessment for Battlement Mesa, Garfield County Colorado (UofC 2010) 3. Inglewood Oil Field Communities Health Assessment (LACDPH 2011a) 4. Health Impact Assessment of Shale Gas Extraction (NAP 2013) Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -11-
  24. 24. In the process of identifying pathways to evaluate in this HIA, the data for baseline conditions were established. While there are many important health impacts to evaluate, the scope of the HIA is dependent on available data and methods to conduct the assessment. HIA is an emerging field of study, in which the technical capacity to conduct qualitative and qualitative analysis is continuing to evolve. In the scoping step, existing health and environmental measures from regulatory agency monitoring and published reports were documented in the Baseline Health Assessment (see Appendix E). Baseline data collected for the purposes of the EIR were also incorporated into the Baseline Health Assessment. Original data collection, such as health surveys or exposure assessment, is beyond the scope of this HIA. Based on public input, review of the project description, and available scientific evidence, the following pathways through which health could be impacted by the proposed project are presented in Sections 3.2.1 through 3.2.5:  Air Quality  Water and Soil Quality  Noise and Light  Traffic  Community Livability Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -12-
  25. 25. 3.2.1 Air Quality In the project description, E&B stated that its proposed oil and gas development facility will utilize the latest technology and operational advancements in order to reduce impacts on air quality, especially considering the proximity of the adjacent neighborhood. The specific measures proposed include an automatic drill rig powered by electricity (as opposed to diesel), limiting the number of truck trips to and from the Site, and air monitoring activities. This HIA identified and evaluated four primary sources of air quality impacts: construction, truck traffic, and operations. Unless completely mitigated, air emissions from project construction have the potential to impact the surrounding community. Construction equipment and vehicles transporting equipment can expose residents, commercial businesses, pedestrians and bicyclists to fine particulate and diesel particulate matter emissions (see Figure 3‐3). On‐road vehicles can also cause traffic congestion, and increase the risk of traffic injury to motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists (see Section 4.4). In addition to emissions from the internal combustion engines of construction equipment, soil excavation and movement during construction activities can generate dust. Emissions during oil production operations (including testing, drilling and production phases) also have the potential to impact the air quality of the neighborhood. The emission sources associated with operational activities include onsite microturbines used to generate onsite electricity, routine and emergency flaring events, and volatile fugitive emissions from valves, compressors, pumps and connections. Muds that contain hydrocarbons can surface and release hydrocarbon vapors (referred to as “mud off‐ gassing”). Drilling muds may contain hydrogen sulfide, benzene and other volatile contaminants, which can pose adverse short‐term and long‐term health effects to the nearby community. Additionally, hydrogen sulfide and hydrocarbon vapors can leak into ambient air and exceed odor thresholds. Due to the close proximity of the site to neighbors, businesses and the public (within 100 feet of businesses, 160 feet of residences and 20 feet of the public sidewalks), numerous other scenarios could cause odors offsite. These could include various maintenance activities and small spills; equipment components could also leak and cause odors. There is a large amount of evidence in the public health literature that describes the association between ambient air pollutants and health outcomes, specifically respiratory and cardiovascular disease; however, there are inconsistencies and difficulties in interpreting the abundance of the available information. The supporting evidence for evaluating the air quality health determinants illustrated in Figure 3‐3 is summarized in Section 4.1.1. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -13-
  26. 26. FIGURE 3‐3. AIR QUALITY PATHWAY DIAGRAM Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -14-
  27. 27. 3.2.2 Water and Soil Quality Three primary sources of water and soil quality impacts were identified in the scoping phase: (1) discharge of wastewater and surface water runoff during construction and operations, (2) deposition of windblown soil particulates to offsite surface soil, and (3) contamination from a crude oil spill or upset event. The primary water resource near the Site and pipeline route is the Pacific Ocean. The ocean provides a potential exposure pathway for recreational users to come into direct contact with contaminants from the Site, or to ingest fish or seafood that may be impacted from site activities. There are no other surface water bodies in the vicinity of the proposed project. Adjacent land uses that could be impacted by soil particulates include residential, commercial and recreational areas. There are other potential impacts in this area of focus that are not evaluated. Potential storm water impacts have been addressed in the EIR, and a mitigation monitoring plan would improve the existing sewer to allow for the capacity required to support the proposed project. Therefore, storm water is not further evaluated in this assessment. Additionally, groundwater is not evaluated as groundwater beneath the Site is not currently used as a drinking water source. The water and soil quality pathway diagram in Figure 3‐4 summarizes the potential project impacts, health determinants and associated health outcomes. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -15-
  28. 28. FIGURE 3‐4. WATER AND SOIL QUALITY PATHWAY DIAGRAM Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -16-
  29. 29. 3.2.3 Noise and Light Construction, operations and related activities such as truck traffic are major sources of environmental noise for the proposed oil project. Health studies have documented that noise exposure is associated with increased blood pressure (hypertension), cardiovascular disease, sleep disturbance, annoyance, and children’s learning abilities. Construction and operation activities also have the potential to cause vibration disturbances. Ground vibration produced by the drilling and production activities would be below the 0.01 inches/second threshold when it reaches the closest sensitive business, a sound recording studio, it was determined to be less than significant in the EIR (MRS 2014). Vibration was excluded from this assessment due to this low magnitude of potential impact combined with the low ranking vibration received in the survey of health concerns (Table 1‐1). Road vehicle traffic is a significant source of noise in urban areas, and has been well studied in the public health literature. Noise generated by vehicle traffic depends on the traffic volume, traffic speed, and vehicle type. To comply with Site safety plans, many times equipment is fitted with loud back‐up warning systems. In addition to potential noise impacts, disturbances associated with nighttime lighting have been identified as a health determinant. The proposed project will require lighting to maintain a safe working environment for employees at night. Key lighting features of the proposed project include downcast lights on the Site entrance, the construction trailers and/or office buildings, and the drill rig equipment. All light fixtures would be shielded and downcast, and would be located behind the 35‐foot sound attenuation wall to minimize light spill or glare beyond the Site perimeter. The noise and light pathway diagram in Figure 3‐5 summarizes the potential project impacts, health determinants, and associated health outcomes. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -17-
  30. 30. FIGURE 3‐5. NOISE AND LIGHT PATHWAY DIAGRAM Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -18-
  31. 31. 3.2.4 Traffic The construction phases and permanent operations of the proposed project will cause increases in a variety of traffic, especially large truck traffic. The influx of new truck traffic and the impact on safety is one of the primary concerns among community members. Increases in transportation and traffic can impact the health and safety of a community by increasing the risk of motor vehicle accidents, increasing release of hazardous air pollutants (see Section 4.4.1) and increasing road traffic noise (see Section 4.3.1). Increased perception of traffic safety hazards can also impact physical activity levels of community members (recreation and personal commuting). The traffic pathway diagram in Figure 3‐6 summarizes the potential project impacts, health determinants, and associated health outcomes. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -19-
  32. 32. FIGURE 3‐6. TRAFFIC PATHWAY DIAGRAM Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -20-
  33. 33. 3.2.5 Community Livability During the scoping phase, many community members commented that the presence of oil and gas industry in the City of Hermosa Beach has the potential to change the identity of Hermosa Beach as “The Best Little Beach City.” Regardless of whether the proposed project would impose an increase in environmental hazards or health risks, neighbors have expressed concern that the introduction of industry could alter the city’s image. While the proposed Site is small in size (1.3 acre), the current lack of industrial sites in Hermosa Beach brings this issue to the forefront. Why do people live in Hermosa Beach? As part of the Community Dialogue process, a community‐led committee was assembled to define important quality of life factors. This committee found common themes that describe the identity of Hermosa Beach (see Appendix F):  City streets are clean and the beach environment is regularly maintained  Reputation for being a small scenic town and friendly beach community  Bars that attract party crowds at night  Health conscious community that enjoys exercising and spending time outdoors  Accessible city government with active citizens involvement  Safe environment with low crime rate  Known for green/sustainable activities and carbon neutral goal  Schools have a high reputation and benefit from community involvement This area of health focus incorporates the quality of life values into an evaluation of three key project impacts that could result from actual or perceived changes in environmental exposures: potential change in city identify, city revenue from oil and gas production, and access to neighborhood resources (e.g. Greenbelt, Farmer’s Market, and beach). In addition to impacts from the proposed project, this section also identifies impacts and benefits from the opportunity to vote on the proposed project. Community members have expressed concern that letting voters decide whether the proposed project is approved has created political divisions and stress. Residents who are in favor are divided from those who are against the proposed project. While the debate over the proposed project has the potential to disrupt social cohesion, involving the community in the political process can be beneficial to health and well‐being. The community livability pathway diagram in Figure 3‐ 7 summarizes the potential project impacts, health determinants, and associated health outcomes. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -21-
  34. 34. FIGURE 3‐7. COMMUNITY LIVABILITY PATHWAY DIAGRAM Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -22-
  35. 35. 4.0 Assessment Five areas of health focus were identified and assessed in this report: air quality, soil and water quality, traffic, noise and community livability. Within these assessment areas, health determinants were identified through the pathway diagrams (Figures 3‐3 through 3‐7). For example, health determinants identified for air quality are nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), hydrogen sulfide, odor, and greenhouse gases. The impact assessment takes into account the proposed project as described by E&B in its project application, as well as mitigation controls set forth in the EIR (MRS 2014). EIR mitigation measures are intended to reduce significant impacts where feasible. Mitigation measures identified in the EIR are conditions which must be met if the proposed project is approved by Hermosa voters. Section 8.0 of the EIR contains a listing of all mitigation measures that will be included as conditions of approval for the proposed project. Assessment Methods Several methods were used to assess potential health impacts of the proposed project: 1. Literature review using PubMed and Google Scholar to search the public health evidence for each health determinant and health outcome combination. For example to assess the relationship between greenhouse gas emissions and heat‐ related illness, the following search terms were used: greenhouse gas OR climate change AND heat‐related illness OR physical health OR psychological health. To be included in the analysis, sources had to be peer‐reviewed or published in the grey literature (informally published literature) by a credible source. 2. Consistent with the scoping phase, a professional engineer with over 15 years of experience in the oil and gas industry was consulted to identify industry standards and specific vulnerabilities relevant to the proposed project design. 3. Information collected in the EIR process was used to carry out analyses of health outcomes. For example, the projected concentration of odorous materials is incorporated into the health assessment of odor and the predicted number of truck traffic trips from the Traffic Impact Analysis is incorporated into the health assessment of traffic safety. 4. Data analysis of existing health conditions and potential health effect estimates was conducted, as the availability of data allowed. For example, if baseline mortality/morbidity rates were available and increase in mortality/morbidities rates could be estimated for the proposed project impact, then the resulting change in mortality/morbidity was calculated in this assessment. This type of calculation was possible for estimating change in cancer mortality and asthma morbidity as a result of inhalation exposure to air emissions. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -23-
  36. 36. Lastly, a qualitative ranking scale was used in order to characterize health impacts and/or benefits of the proposed project according to public health considerations: direction of health effect, geographic extent, likelihood, vulnerable populations, duration and frequency of exposure, and magnitude/severity1. For each category of health consideration, consistent definitions were identified and assigned numerical values. Numeric rankings are summed for each health impact to create a relative rank. The lowest possible rank is 6 and the highest possible rank is 15, with a negative (‐) number representing negative health effects and a positive (+) number representing positive health effects. The numeric ranks do not represent a quantitative estimate of risk and are not intended to be compared to health standards, nor are the numeric ranks meaningful outside the context of this HIA. They are provided for the purpose of describing the relative importance of each potential health impact compared to the other potential health impacts in this HIA. Two independent reviewers assigned rankings to ensure objectivity and consistency. 1. Direction: Depending on whether the predicted change may either improve (+) or adversely impact (‐) the community, the health determinant is assigned either a negative or positive value. 2. Geographic Extent: Classified as localized (may occur in close proximity to the proposed project activities, i.e., within a few blocks, 1 point) or community‐wide (may occur across Hermosa Beach, 2 points). If the geographic extent is global (there are no geographic boundaries), then geographic extent is weighted as 0 points. 3. Presence of Vulnerable Populations: Classified as no (affects all subpopulations evenly, 1 point) or yes (disproportionately affects subpopulations that are more sensitive to potential health impacts, 2 points). 4. Duration of Exposure: Classified as short (less than a month, 1 point), medium (more than a month and less than a year, 2 points) or long (more than a year, 3 points). 5. Frequency of Exposure: Classified as infrequent (periodically, or rarely, 1 point), or frequent (potential for constant or multiple exposures, 2 points). 6. Likelihood/Strength of Evidence: Classified as unlikely (little evidence that health impact or benefit could occur as a result of the proposed project, 1 point), possible (logically plausible that health effects may occur, 2 points), and likely (evidence suggests health effects commonly occur in similar projects, 3 points). 1 The qualitative ranking scale chosen for this assessment is a tool developed by the Colorado School of Public Health for an evaluation of oil and gas development near a community (UofC 2010). Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -24-
  37. 37. 7. Magnitude/Severity: Classified as low (health effects can be easily managed and do not require treatment, 1 point), moderate (health effects that require treatment or medical attention and are reversible, 2 points), and severe (health effects that are chronic, irreversible or fatal, 3 points). Relationship to the EIR As discussed in Section 2.0, the proposed project is subject to regulation under CEQA, which requires an EIR. CEQA also requires the identification and analysis of health effects when the EIR is conducted. However, the significance of a health impact evaluated in the EIR relates to comparison to quantitative thresholds from regulatory standards. The established environmental thresholds may not reflect the breadth of impacts considered by the HIA. For instance, air emissions that meet regulatory criteria (and therefore considered insignificant in the EIR) may still increase adverse human health outcomes in a population. Further, while CEQA legally requires that health‐based standards be addressed in the EIR, traditionally EIRs are not designed to comprehensively address health impacts, including social and economic determinants of health. Public health agencies acknowledge that the EIR process has traditionally included at most a cursory analysis of health effects. HIA is becoming the preferred method to evaluate health impacts of proposed projects and policies in many local governments, academic institutions, public health agencies and nonprofit organizations across the country (CDPH 2010, NRC 2011). Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -25-
  38. 38. 4.1 Air Quality The E&B proposed oil and gas production facility could affect air quality because of the air emissions from construction and operations, notably criteria pollutants (CO, NOx, SOx, and PM), as well as volatile organic compounds and hydrogen sulfide. Air emissions and/or ambient concentrations were estimated in the EIR (MRS 2014). While a comprehensive list of emissions was identified and modeled in the EIR, this HIA focuses on four air pollutants that could have the most adverse health impacts:  Oxides of Nitrogen (NOx)  Particulate Matter (PM)  Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), specifically benzene and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)  Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and other odors This HIA also addresses potential health impacts associated with the emission of greenhouse gases. 4.1.1 Air Quality and Health There are a substantial number of studies evaluating the potential associations between health outcomes and exposures to air pollutants, which have been important in identifying susceptible subgroups and associated risk factors. Oxides of Nitrogen Recent studies provide scientific evidence that NO2 is associated with a range of respiratory effects, and there is sufficient evidence to suggest a likely causal relationship between even short‐term exposure to NO2 and respiratory disease rates (USEPA 2008). Following short‐ term NO2 exposure, there is an increased risk of susceptibility to both viral and bacterial infections. Among asthmatic children, multicity studies show support for associations between respiratory symptoms and childhood asthma at ambient levels of NO2 (24‐hr average ranging from 18 to 32 ppb) (Schildcrout et al. 2006, Mortimer et al. 2000). In a systematic meta‐analysis of single‐ and multi‐city studies investigating ambient NO2 levels, the combined odds ratio (OR) for asthma symptoms was 1.14 (95% CI: 1.05 – 1.24) (USEPA 2008). Positive associations have been reported between short‐term ambient NO2 concentrations and increased number of emergency department visits and hospital admissions for respiratory disease, primarily asthma. The positive association between hospital admissions and NO2 exposure is consistent among children, older adults and asthma patients of all ages. A recent study concluded infants are more susceptible to asthma when exposed to NO2 during the first year of life – an increase in average NO2 of 9.4 µg/m3 during the first year of life was associated with an odds ratio of 1.17 for physician‐ diagnosed asthma (95% CI: 1.04–1.31) (Nishimura et al. 2013). Long‐term exposure studies have not provided conclusive evidence that NO2 acts as a carcinogen. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -26-
  39. 39. Evidence that NO2 has a role in the development of cardiovascular disease is lacking in short‐term and long‐term studies (USEPA 2011). The effects of NO2 on cardiovascular health in animal studies are also inconsistent and provide little plausibility for the effects of NO2 on the cardiovascular system (USEPA 2011). Positive associations between ambient NO2 concentrations and hospital admissions for cardiovascular disease are diminished when carbon monoxide and particulate matter are also included in the model; thereby indicating the studies of NO2 exposure and cardiovascular disease are confounded by co‐ pollutants. Results from several large US and European mortality studies indicate a positive association between short‐term ambient NO2 concentrations and the risk of all‐cause mortality, with the effect estimates ranging from 0.5 to 3.6% excess risk in mortality per 10.6 µg/m3 incremental change in daily 24‐hour average NO22. Increases in short term NO2 exposure were associated with increases in mortality rates of between 0.05% and 1.72% (per 10 µg/m3 NO2) (Anderson et al. 2007). A widely reported American Cancer Society (ACS) study reports an increase in NO2 exposure is associated with an increase of up to 5% in mortality rate from all‐causes (per 11.2  µg/m3) (Pope et al. 2002). While most of the public health literature focuses on cardiovascular and respiratory‐related health outcomes, recent studies of urban air pollution have also linked nitrogen dioxide to preterm birth and low birth weight. Both short‐term and long‐term studies support the conclusion that people with preexisting pulmonary conditions are likely at greater risk from ambient NO2 exposures than the general public. Specifically, older adults (>65 years of age) are at an increased risk of mortality and hospitalizations, while children (<18 years of age) more frequently experience adverse respiratory health disease outcomes such as asthma than adults. People with occupations that require them to be outdoors close to sources of NO2 and other traffic pollutants (e.g. crossing guards, highway patrol officers, taxi drivers) may also be more vulnerable to NO2 exposure. Particulate Matter Particulate matter is a widespread air pollutant composed of a mixture of solid and liquid particles, and its effects on health are well documented. Particles with a diameter of 10 micrometers or smaller are referred to as PM10, and particles with a diameter of 2.5 micrometers or smaller are known as PM2.5. Both PM10 and PM2.5 include inhalable particles that are small enough to enter the lungs, and both short‐term (hours, days) and 2 Excess risk estimates are standardized to a 20‐ppb incremental change in daily 24‐h average NO2 or a 30 ppb incremental change in daily 1‐h max NO2. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -27-
  40. 40. long‐term (months, years) exposure can result in increased respiratory and cardiovascular disease. Specifically, PM exposure is associated with exacerbation of asthma and an increase in hospital admissions. In addition, increased mortality rates from cardiovascular and respiratory diseases such as lung cancer are well documented. The most susceptible groups include people with pre‐existing lung or heart disease, older adults and children. Long‐term exposure to PM2.5 is a stronger risk factor for morbidity and mortality than the larger PM10. Long‐term exposure to PM2.5 is associated with an increase in the long‐term risk of cardiopulmonary mortality by 6–13% per 10 µg/m3 of PM2.5 (Beelen et al. 2008, Krewski et al. 2009), and is associated with a 2 to 11% increase in all‐cause mortality per 10 µg/m3 of PM2.5 (Pope et al. 2002). In a sensitivity analysis of the ACS study, the Committee on Medical Effects of Air Pollution (2009) estimated that the all‐cause mortality has an overall range of plausibility of 0 to 15%. All‐cause daily mortality is estimated to increase by 0.2–0.6% per 10 µg/m3 of PM10 (WHO 2005, Samoli et al. 2008). The scientific evidence for health impacts from combustion‐related PM is more consistent than that of PM from other sources. In a Southern California Air Basin (SoCAB) Study, infants exposed to elevated levels of PM10 were at higher risk of death from respiratory illnesses. The SoCAB Study also found that mothers exposed to PM10 during pregnancy are at higher risk of reproductive health outcomes, such as preterm delivery, delivering a low birth weight infant and congenital heart defects (Ritz and Wilhelm 2008). Volatile Organic Compounds Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) primarily associated with oil and gas emission sources and health effects include benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). This evaluation focuses on the VOCs identified in the EIR air toxics risk assessment as having the most carcinogenic potential – benzene and PAHs (MRS 2014). Benzene is classified as a carcinogen according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), USEPA and California EPA (Cal/EPA). The major effect of long‐term exposure to benzene is on the blood – it can cause a decrease in red blood cells and adversely impact the immune system. Exposure to high levels of benzene in air over long periods of time can cause leukemia, specifically acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), which is a cancer of the blood‐forming organs (ATSDR 2007, see Appendix G). It is not known whether children are more sensitive to benzene exposure than adults, however animal studies have shown that developmental effects such as low birth weight and delayed bone formation are possible. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -28-
  41. 41. PAHs are a group of over 100 different chemicals that are formed as a result of incomplete combustion. In addition to being found in crude oil, some PAHs are used in medicines, plastics and pesticides (ATSDR 1996, see Appendix G). Some PAHs are also known carcinogens. The types of cancer reported in carcinogenic PAH exposure studies are dependent on the route of exposure (Cal/EPA 2005). In the case of inhalation of carcinogenic PAHs, the cancers of concern are related to the lung and respiratory system. Benzo(a)pyrene, which is classified as a carcinogen by IARC, USEPA and Cal/EPA, is considered to be the most carcinogenic PAH. The epidemiological evidence for the carcinogenicity of benzene and benzo(a)pyrene are from studies of workers exposed to these chemicals for long periods of time in occupational settings. Conclusions from studies of potential community‐wide exposure to benzene, benzo(a)pyrene and other petroleum‐related chemicals vary widely. Associations between oil and gas activity and community cancer rates have been the focus of some health studies. The literature examining this relationship is summarized below.  A population‐wide leukemia incidence study carried out from 1986 to 1988 in China using leukemia case data was collected from hospitals, clinics, and factory doctors. The standardized incidence ratio (SIR) of leukemia in oil fields was significantly higher (1.46, p<0.01) than other industrial areas such as coal mines (SIR = 1.18) and steel factories (SIR = 1.04), as well as urban (SIR = 1.16) and rural areas (SIR = 0.89). A limitation of the study was that the authors did not account for any potential confounders such as age and sex (Chongli and Xiaobo 1991).  Several studies in Ecuador have been conducted to examine cancer rates in a village located near oil fields. San Sebastian et al (2001) reported the overall cancer rate was 2.3 times higher than a reference population, though the difference was statistically insignificant (95% CI: 0.97, 4.46), and leukemia incidence among children living in proximity to oil fields was significantly higher (relative risk = 2.56; 95% CI: 1.35, 4.86). However, this study has been criticized for exposure misclassification and Kelsh et al. (2009) found that overall cancer and site‐specific cancer rates were similar or lower among the village residents.  A Croatian study examined blood cancer incidence rates between populations living near oil and gas fields compared with those living in areas free from oil and gas development. The authors reported an association between oil and gas development activities and relative risk of chronic myeloid leukemia and multiple myeloma. Incidence of chronic myeloid leukemia was 3.4 times that in the reference area (95% CI: 1.65, 6.87), and multiple myeloma was 1.6 times that in the reference area (95% CI: 1.01, 2.63) (Gazdek and Mustajbegovic 2007).  One available biomonitoring study was conducted in response to citizen concerns in DISH, Texas. The Texas Department of State Health Services (TxDSHS) collected Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -29-
  42. 42. blood and urine samples from 28 people who lived in and near DISH. DISH is one of the largest onshore natural gas fields in North America. Overall, VOCs in blood were consistent with exposure to household products and drinking water, and the investigation did not indicate that community‐wide exposures from gas wells or compressor stations were occurring in the sample population  In another study (Mokry 2010), the Texas Department of State Health Services responded to local citizens’ concern that benzene from gas drilling could be causing cancer in Flower Mound, Texas. Standardized incidence ratios were calculated to evaluate if there was a higher incidence of cancer in the potentially exposed population, with a focus on cancers associated with benzene ‐ leukemia and non‐ Hodgkin's lymphoma. There was no evidence of excess cancer, with the exception of female breast cancer, a cancer not known to be associated with exposure to benzene. The majority of these studies are ecological studies, which means that aggregated characteristics of populations are used instead of individual‐level information. Many of the studies have group‐level data on exposure status, and do not measure individual exposure to contaminants. Overall, ecological studies and exposures must be interpreted cautiously and without concluding that causative relationships exist on the individual level. Hydrogen Sulfide Hydrogen sulfide is naturally occurring in crude oil and natural gas. It can be extremely toxic and irritating, and its primary health effect is respiratory failure. Acute exposure to high levels of H2S can result in loss of consciousness and death. A single loss of consciousness event can result in permanent neurobehavioral damage (Skrtic 2006). Several community studies investigated whether there is an association between chronic H2S exposure and neurological effects. Environmental sources of H2S were associated with nausea, headaches and eye irritation at levels as low as 7‐10 ppb (Jaakola 1990 and Marttila 1995). Odor The human nose is very sensitive and can detect odors at low levels (often in the part per billion, or ppb, range). Several compounds associated with oil and gas development can produce odors. Sulfur compounds, found in oil and gas, have very low odor threshold levels, such as the rotten eggs smell from hydrogen sulfide (H2S). Many volatile organic compounds (VOCs) found in oil and gas typically have a “gas station” like odor. The effects of these odors are related to the frequency, duration, concentration, and the individuals’ level of sensitivity. Draft Health Impact Assessment - Proposed E&B Oil Drilling and Production Project City of Hermosa Beach, CA -30-

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