05.17 Approved Minutes

 

CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN FRANCISCO

BIODIESEL ACCESS TASK FORCE

 REGULAR MEETING

 

APPROVED MINUTES

 THURSDAY, MAY 17, 2007, 10:00 A.M.

 

CITY HALL, ROOM 278

ONE DR. CARLTON B. GOODLETT PLACE

SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94102 

 

TASK FORCE MEMBERS:  VOTING:  Eric Bowen (Chair), Adam Hagen (Vice-Chair), Melissa Hardy, Benjamin Jordan, Karri Ving. NON-VOTING: David Augustine (Treasurer/Tax Collector), Richard Berman (Port), Vandana Bali (Department of the Environment), Sarah Dennis (Planning Department), Mike Ferry (Fire Department), Tom Franza (SFPUC), Laurence Kornfield (DBI), Dina Mackin (MOCD), Marty Mellera (MTA), Virginia St. Jean (DPH).

 

TASK FORCE SECRETARY:  Monica Fish

 

ORDER OF BUSINESS

 

1.      CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL.  The Biodiesel Access Task Force meeting was called to order at 10:16 a.m.  Voting Present:  Chair Bowen, Vice-Chair Hagen, Members Jordan and Ving; Excused: Member Hardy. Non-Voting Members Present:  Members Bali, Berman, Franza, Mackin, and St. Jean; Absent: Members Augustine, Dennis, Kornfield, Ferry, and Mellera.

 

2.      ACTION:  Approval of the April 19, 2007 Biodiesel Access Task Force Regular Meeting Minutes.  Upon Motion by Vice-Chair Hagen and second by Member Ving, the April 19, 2007 Meeting Minutes were approved without objection (AYES:  Chair Bowen, Vice-Chair Hagen, Members Jordan and Ving; Absent:  Member Hardy) (Explanatory Documents:  April 19, 2007 Approved Minutes)

 

Item 4 was heard before Item 3.

 

3.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  Status Report on Recommendations to the Board of Supervisors on Incentives for Gas Stations to Sell Biodiesel (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting). 

SPEAKER: Chair Eric Bowen

Chair Bowen stated that this item has been subdivided into two types of incentives—one is for recommendation of a Health Department fee waiver that would be done administratively, and the other is for payroll tax incentives that would go through the legislative process.

 

Member Mackin reported that the payroll tax exemption legislation is on hold right now as Supervisor Jew introduced similar legislation that addressed payroll tax exemptions but only removed the lower cap.  As a result, the legislation that Supervisor McGoldrick and Member Mackin have been working on has been held up and a meeting has been scheduled to discuss this issue.  Member Mackin stated that one of the challenges is that Board members that assign this legislation to Committee are against any type of tax exemptions, which makes it difficult to schedule a meeting before a Committee.  Member Mackin stated that there are two committees that the legislation could be presented to, Budget or the Government Oversight Committee.  Vice-Chair Hagen offered to discuss this issue with the Supervisors responsible for scheduling agenda items to Committee.  Member Mackin stated that she would meet with Supervisor McGoldrick and then follow-up with Vice-Chair Hagen on this effort.

 

Member Mackin asked what the Task Force would like to add to the legislation.  Chair Bowen stated that the original draft legislation that created the Task Force included a four or five year payroll tax exemption for gas stations or independents that sold biodiesel.  The draft legislation was changed so that the Task Force would make the recommendation that the payroll tax credit include a provision for biodiesel.  Chair Bowen stated that Task Force members have been researching what other incentives to include along with the payroll tax exemption and have included Health Department fee waivers. Member Mackin stated that fee waivers are more useful and doable than a payroll tax exemption.

 

Member Mackin stated that a station that offers B100 could qualify for a payroll tax exemption, but a gas station that has only one biodiesel tank would not qualify under a payroll tax exemption, because it would have to be a clean tech business with at least 75% of its business activity related to energy.  Member Ving stated that as she understands it regardless of what the Task Force pursues, a B100 station may qualify as a clean tech station anyway and would therefore qualify for a payroll tax exemption.  

 

Chair Bowen discussed a report presented by Member Augustine from the Treasurer Tax Collector’s Office indicating that the vast majority in the fueling industry do not pay enough payroll to be subject to the payroll tax so it may not be a meaningful incentive. Member St. Jean read an excerpt from Member Augustine’s report that states that 145 businesses were self identified as gas stations in August 2006; 141 were subject to payroll tax, 4 were not.    Member Mackin advised that a business has to have at least 10 employees to qualify for the payroll tax exemption, but that an amendment would be proposed to change the number to 5 or 4.

 

Member Jordan asked if the Task Force feels they have investigated all incentives for gas stations.  Chair Bowen stated that the Fire and Building Inspection Departments have fees.  Member St. Jean stated that biodiesel consumers have to be routed to the stations in order for them to continue to effectively sell biodiesel.  Member Ving recommended offering basic support information to stations, such as a “how to guide.” 

 

Member St. Jean stated that she has been told by DPH’s Weights and Measures Unit that biodiesel dispensers have to have a special certification and that there are no certified biodiesel dispensers. Chair Bowen stated that all biodiesel being dispensed currently in California is by certified petroleum diesel dispensers and is a state-level issue.  Chair Bowen stated that his understanding from the state Department of Measurement Standards is that given that biodiesel and petroleum diesel’s chemical properties from a dispensing standpoint are similar enough, there has been no statement that certified diesel dispensing equipment is not okay for biodiesel.  Member St. Jean stated that she would ask if a blanket variance can be done until there is a letter from the state saying they are working on approved dispensers.  Chair Bowen stated that he would follow-up on this issue.  

 

Member Mackin recommended that the Task Force discuss the Draft Legislation at their June meeting.  This item was continued to the June 21 meeting to discuss the Draft Legislation and to review other potential incentives.

       

4.      DISCUSSION and ACTION:  Discussion of a Recommendation Letter to the Health Department on Fee Waivers for Biodiesel Filling Stations (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).  Explanatory Document:  Draft Recommendation Letter) 

SPEAKERS: Chair Eric Bowen and Member Benjamin Jordan

 

Member St. Jean requested additional time for the Department of Public Health (DPH) manager to review the Draft Letter prepared by Member Jordan, but indicated the letter is on the right track.  Member Jordan stated that he would incorporate edits prepared by Member St. Jean.  Member St. Jean reported that the HAZMAT Ordinance is about to go through an amendment, and the DPH manager suggested an alternate incentive to implement a fee discount for businesses that are awarded a DPH Clean and Green Award. The businesses would have to demonstrate exemplary compliance and do pollution prevention measures and accounting to qualify for the award and discount.  Member St. Jean stated that if there is a 10% fee discount for clean and green businesses, further waivers could be offered depending on the approach taken by the business.  Fee waivers would be issued on a case by case basis.

 

Chair Bowen asked if the businesses would apply for the award.  Member St. Jean stated that businesses do go through an application process, and the Department of Public Health tells some businesses that they qualify.  The award is similar to the Green Business Program but is more focused to HAZMAT sites.  Vice-Chair Hagen asked if the award would apply to new start-up as well as existing businesses. Member St. Jean stated that they have had new auto shops approach DPH in order to be clean and green from the beginning.   Chair Bowen advised that it is a two-step process that consists of an application that describes their activities, how that meets the criteria, and an inspection process.  Member St. Jean stated that businesses are helped to be clean and green throughout the process for no charge.  

 

Member Jordan asked if a traditional gas station that has gasoline and diesel onsite with a good compliance record would quality for the Clean and Green Award.  Member St. Jean stated that DPH does not want to promote awards for regular gas stations because if they are not promoting biofuel, they would not be considered clean and green.  In order to qualify for an award/ fee discount, a traditional gas station must have at least one tank that offers biodiesel.

 

Member Jordan summarized the draft document (see explanatory document).  It was stated that the first paragraph is a summary of what the Task Force is and what they do; the second paragraph talks more specifically on what the Task Force is asking the Public Health Director in terms of analyzing fee waivers, and the third is a list of the items that are being requested.  The intent would be that this letter be produced by the Task Force on City letterhead.  Member St. Jean stated that the letter may be revised to be addressed to the DPH Manager instead of the DPH Director.

 

Member Mackin asked how high the fees are.  Member St. Jean stated that there are many categories depending on the situation at the business, e.g. if they have four tank, the fees would be a lot more than for just one above-ground tank.  Vice-Chair Hagen stated it would be from $2500 and $5000, with the average being $3000.   Member Mackin stated that she is concerned with the difference in the B20 and B100 discounts that are stated in the letter, as it makes the 20% reduction for conversion to B20 look too small in comparison to the 100% for B100. Vice-Chair Hagen stated that most businesses would be more likely to offer B20 and he would not want to discourage them by offering only a 20% discount for B20 but to offer up to 100% for B100.  Member Mackin stated that given the complexity of getting fee waivers, if it is not enough of a financial incentive, it may not be worth the effort.  Vice-Chair Hagen recommended doing at least B20 to qualify for 100%, but then there is nothing between the B20 and B100 as far as gradation of percent.  Member Ving stated that getting the gas station to initially convert is the hardest part, and if they initially convert to B20, it is a gateway to increase the blend in the future.  The objective would be for gas stations to sign on regardless of the blend right now.

 

Member Jordan asked if the letter states that B20 and higher qualifies for a fee waiver, would it be reasonable to exclude the language on capping the number of stations between B20 and B100 and putting in a number limit on just biodiesel fee waivers, and if so, would that number still be 12.  Chair Bowen suggested rephrasing the letter to state that we are still looking for a cap at around 12, and that we would encourage that when allocating those 12 that there should be a reasonable balance between blended pumps of B20 or B50 and pure biodiesel pumps so we are getting a variety of fuel into the marketplace.  Vice-Chair Hagen stated that the goal is good, but the likelihood would be that more gas stations would bring on B20 than B100, and would not want to limit the potential marketplace by capping the number of individual B20 versus B100.  

 

Unidentified Speaker stated that setting the cap at 12 may entice businesses to act faster.  It was suggested to add another sentence to the letter that the cap could be reconsidered in order to extend the program.  Chair Bowen stated that rather than stating a cap, it could state that our recommendation would apply to around 12 stations, but if demand seems to justify more, we would encourage DPH to take that into consideration.  Vice-Chair Hagen suggested stating that the first 12 B20 stations are eligible and to add an asterisk stating that with the Health Department’s discretion, additional waivers may be offered. 

 

Member Ving stated that there should be an effort to reach out to the current biodiesel community to get B100 stations going and offered to help make announcements to the biodiesel community.  Member Ving stated that ideally, she would like to see six B100 stations.  Chair Bowen recommended issuing a press release from the Task Force on incentives. 

 

Public Comment:  Unidentified Speaker asked if the basis for the fee is the number of tanks that the station owner has.  Member St. Jean stated that there is a flat fee, per tank fee, and a volume fee.  The fees are very site specific and the more you have, the higher your fees will be, and the more complex.  It is based on DPH’s oversight time to make sure of compliance. 

 

This item was continued to the next meeting for discussion and or approval of a revised draft letter.

 

5.      DISCUSSION and ACTION:  Approval of Letter to Gas Stations on the Prospect of Selling Biodiesel to Individual Consumers (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).  (Explanatory Document:  Biodiesel Access Task Force Letter to Gas Stations)  

SPEAKERS:  Vice-Chair Adam Hagen and Chair Eric Bowen

 

Chair Bowen discussed the Biodiesel Access Task Force letter to gas stations that describes biodiesel’s environmental benefits and advises that stations can contact the Committee who can put them in contact with people who can help them install and provide biodiesel to the public.  Member Bali asked if the letter should include a reference that there are B20 standards for good fuel.  Chair Bowen stated that message would be relayed once the Task Force is contacted.  Member Mackin recommended mentioning what the demand is for biodiesel.  Member Berman stated that he read that the biodiesel market is expected to grow from a couple of hundred million to over a billion by 2010. 

 

Member St. Jean confirmed that the letter would be going only to existing gas stations.  Chair Bowen stated that they are pulling from the payroll tax registration list those that are listed in that category, but that the letter would also be posted on the website so everyone has access to it.  Vice-Chair Hagen stated that the letter could also be sent to everyone’s distribution lists. 

 

Vice-Chair Hagen stated that in the interest of saving time as it has taken over three months to send this letter, he would motion to approve the letter in its current form, seconded by Member Ving.  (AYES:  Chair Bowen, Vice-Chair Hagen, Members Jordan and Ving) (Absent:  Member Hardy). Member Ving confirmed with Chair Bowen that the letter would be sent out before the next meeting and that the Task Force Secretary would report back with whoever has responded in order to gage effectiveness. 

 

6.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT.  Update on Permitting Regulations for Biodiesel (Continued Discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).

SPEAKER:  Member Benjamin Jordan

 

Member Jordan stated that this agenda item is about what permitting is required for biodiesel and if it is directly related to diesel.  Member Jordan stated that he is working on a permitting summary report that will be from the Task Force that includes all regulations as it pertains to underground and above ground storage tanks for B20 and B100.  It was stated that non-traditional parameters for the dispensing of B100 are being developed.  The summary will include traditional and non-traditional gas stations dispensing biodiesel, e.g. an auto shop or a health food store dispensing B100, a mobile fueling permit permitted through the Fire Department for people who come to town and don’t have locations, e.g. a circus, and rail car handling and storage guidelines.  Member Jordan reported that they are also working on residential storage guidelines and recommendations, which will be a page of best practices for handling that will be circulated to departments for comments. 

 

Vice-Chair Hagen stated that he thought the Fire Department had indicated they were against any type of residential storage.  Member Jordan stated that the Fire Department initially stated that they were doubtful, but were not able to supply specific references as to why.  Member Jordan stated that if the Fire Department has reason to not allow residential storage, he would like to have it clearly articulated in order to provide that information to people in the information on best handling practices. 

 

Member Ving and Member St. Jean recommended that the Fire Department set a volume standard for storage as people are already storing gasoline in their homes for other uses, e.g. lawn mowers, barbecues.  Member St. Jean asked if the Fire Department had issued a declaration as to whether they will be permitting these activities and whether they have come to terms that it is an official Class 3B liquid that would require above ground permits.  Member Jordan stated that in their last plan check comments, it was indicated that it was a certified Class 3B liquid and it will have to be regulated in that way. 

 

Member St. Jean asked if the Fire Department would be willing to do local waivers.  Member Jordan stated that they have not discussed this issue, but there is a mechanism for that to happen through the local Fire Marshall.  Member Berman asked if this topic relates to B20 or just B100.  Member Jordan stated to B100 only, and that the only component in their permit summary that will discuss B20 would be for traditional gas stations because that is where the diesel must be regulated.  The objective is to understand how a 3B liquid can be stored on a residential site, at non-traditional stations, on railcars and mobile dispensers.   

 

Member Berman asked if the regulation summary pertains to both B20 and B100.  Member Jordan stated that the summary will be more scenario based and would include as much about regulations as possible.  Member Berman asked whether homeowner permitting was considered.   Member Jordan stated that would be considered.  Member Ving asked if there was a difference in the 3B classification between neat biodiesel which is 100% and B99.9. Member Jordan stated that he has not received clarity on that issue and a discussion should be included on this topic.  Member St. Jean stated there is a HAZMAT consideration.  Member Jordan stated that it is a tax component that biodiesel blends are eligible for a percentage reduction of taxes and that B99.9 and B100 are not eligible. 

 

Member Berman asked whether Member Jordan was working on marine issues.  Member Jordan stated that he is not and would like a section on marine dispensing in the permitting summary.  Member Berman suggested adding the Certificate of Financial Responsibilities for Marine Fueling, which is a California Department of Fish and Game requirement.  Member St. Jean stated that existing gas stations have a Certificate of Financial Responsibilities for underground tanks under Title 23.       

 

7.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  Citywide Fleet Biodiesel Implementation Update (Continued Discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).

SPEAKER: Member Vandana Bali

 

Member Bali reported that as of March 31, the City fleet is at a 39% conversion rate to biodiesel.  The key areas that still have to transition are:

 

·         MUNI, who are in the process of getting approval on their pilot plan expected some time this month. 

·         The PUC hasn’t confirmed or denied that they have started their remaining pilot programs.

·         The Port has an issue of where they will be buying and getting the biodiesel.  The question was whether the Port could buy B20 at the San Francisco Petroleum site at Illinois Street where there is a lack of demand. The Port has 28 pieces of equipment that use diesel which is not a large number, and the amount of petroleum diesel used has not been established. Chair Bowen recommended the Olympian Station, and Member Bali offered to consult with OCA whether the Port could fuel outside of their master fuel contract.  Member Bali advised that Mr. Jim Johnson stated that the Port is welcome to fuel at the Cesar Chavez site, but that location may be too far away from Port property.

 

Public Comment:  Unidentified Speaker stated that as far as the PUC goes, the portion of PUC’s fleet that fuels at Mr. Johnson’s yard is 100% on B20, which is mostly the wastewater unit.         

 

8.      DISCUSSION:  The Task Force will provide comments on a draft outline for an Informational Report to the Board of Supervisors setting forth its recommendations as well as criteria for evaluating the success of the Task Force's proposals as required by Board of Supervisors Resolution 82-06. (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).  (Explanatory Document:  Draft Outline)

 

Member Jordan distributed the Draft Outline of Biodiesel activities that are being worked on or have been achieved and requested additional comments from Task Force members within the next month.  Member Jordan stated that he would like to include Marine Committee activities.  Member Ving stated that she would handle that section.  Chair Bowen requested that an updated outline be presented at the next meeting at which time authors would be identified to work on designated sections of the report.

 

Vice-Chair Hagen reported that the Task Force has six more meetings until its sunset date and to complete its work. 

 

9.      INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  Status Update on Building a Biodiesel Manufacturing Facility in San Francisco (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting). 

SPEAKER: Member Dina Mackin

 

Member Mackin reported that Member Berman is in charge of developing a Draft Request for Proposal (RFP) that will be considered on June 9 at the Port backlands community meeting, which is a public meeting that Task Force members can participate in. Member Berman stated that he would inquire about the formatting of the meeting to share with the Task Force.  Member Mackin requested input (facts, data and information) from members to support the importance of having a biodiesel manufacturing facility on the Port that she could incorporate into the presentation.  It was stated that arguing that transportation of biodiesel plays an important role in carbon emissions, and that San Francisco would be able to manufacture waste, grease, and feedstock would be relevant factors.

 

Member St. Jean asked where the potential manufacturing site would be located.  Member Mackin stated that there would be various locations that would be considered.  Member Berman stated that the backlands workshop will address a defined area on Port property between Piers 96, 90 and 92, which is undeveloped land under consideration for development.  The RFP is one of many proposals that will be discussed at this community meeting. 

 

Member Mackin requested information on the environmental impacts of manufacturing as this will be the primary issue.  Member Berman stressed the importance of advocates being prepared to address the anticipated concerns for community impact instead of saying they will come back with information.  Reasons that the community might be alarmed might be the size of the facility regardless of what it is doing and the whole question of production.  There are parallel concerns with the Darling and the rendering plant and standard issues such as traffic impacts, emissions, and materials that they have on site.  It is important to advise on traditional or typical production facilities, whether there is actually blending on site, is petroleum diesel stored in large volumes and used in large volumes.  Member St. Jean asked whether there would be conditions on trucks going in and out of the area.  It was stated that may be the case for all proposals, not just for a biodiesel manufacturing plant.  Member Berman stated that it is a broad meeting, not just about biodiesel.

 

Member Mackin stated that she has been assigned to presenting the proposal and requested a supporting panel to be present.  Member St. Jean recommended Ms. Karen Pierce, from DPH, who is the Vice Chair of the Southern Waterfront Committee to address urban asthma and emissions issues.  Member Bali recommended Ms. Linda Weiner from the American Lung Association.  Mr. von Wedel was also recommended as a participant. 

Member Ving stated that Ukiah Biofuels would be a good resource to invite to the forum. 

 

Vice-Chair Hagen stated that one of the misconstrued comparisons would be to compare the manufacturing facility to an oil refinery.  Member Berman stated that the burden is to demonstrate the distinctions, not to just claim them.  Member Bali recommended submitting information about other existing biofuel facilities around the state, e.g. Pacific Biodiesel in Maui who has had best practices for the past ten years.  Vice-Chair Hagen recommended showing photos of existing facilities to show there are no tanker trunks and smoke stacks, and a handful of stainless steel tanks.  Visuals of the existing facility in Hawaii were suggested.  Member Mackin stated that people that build biofuel facilities are the ones that actually understand and have information on emissions.

 

Member Mackin suggested doing a survey to gather information from multiple biodiesel manufacturers.  Member Jordan recommended contacting Community Fuels at the Port of Stockton which is a close parallel to what is trying to be achieved. Chair Bowen discussed effective methods of obtaining information through Sunshine Ordinance regulations for access of public documentation.  It was stated that the problem is that all of the publicly available information is on the emissions of the burning of the fuel itself, and there is very little on the economics of manufacturing and impacts from an environmental standpoint.       

 

10.  INFORMATIONAL REPORT:  April 24, 2007 Biodiesel Press Event (Continued discussion from the April 19, 2007 Meeting).

SPEAKERS: Members Vandana Bali and Dina Mackin

 

Member Bali reported that the Biodiesel Press Event went really well.  It was reported that there was television, web, and newspaper coverage and was well attended by advocate groups and the community.

 

11.  DISCUSSION:  San Francisco Unified School District Use of Alternative Fuel in School Buses.

 

Member Bali discussed a Chronicle newspaper article “School Bus Company Falsified Emissions Test Data.”  It had been reported that two mechanics that had worked on Laidlaw buses for nearly two decades, one was fired and one quit, stated that a lot of the emissions and maintenance work and regularly scheduled state-mandated inspections were not happening and they were forced to falsify information.  There are a couple of environmental groups last May that had put forth a lawsuit claiming that there were Proposition 65 violations, exposure to toxic contaminants. Diesel was listed as a toxic air contaminant in 1998, and there is concern with students’ health as a result of diesel exhaust fumes.  Member Bali reported that no one had called the Chronicle back when asked about their maintenance record falsification.  

 

It was reported that there are about 200 school buses that operate in San Francisco.  The School District has an $18 million annual contract with Laidlaw that expired in 2004, was extended until 2009, and may have been extended beyond that another five years.  Laidlaw is in the process of being purchased by First Student, a UK company that also owns Greyhound.  Member Bali stated that she is in the process of fact finding at this time.

 

Member Bali indicated that she talked to the Air District who has an RFP available for school buses that Laidlaw had not applied for.  Laidlaw had been awarded $1.7 million for retrofits a few years ago, and as of two months ago they had not taken advantage of that money to do the retrofits.  They did buy 15 new buses, but they still have the remaining buses that they could retrofit.  It was stated that a strategy beyond biodiesel could be considered, e.g. oxidation catalysts, diesel particulate filters, and CNG school buses.  Member Bali is interested in researching more information about First Student to see what they are doing in the UK with their fleets and then looking at what Greyhound is doing in addition to figuring out the relationship between First Student, Laidlaw, and Greyhound. 

 

Member Bali stated that a group at the school district “Parents Voices” put the pressure on the School District and the School Board and in turn the Board put the pressure on Laidlaw to research the health effects of toxic diesel inside school buses and to establish a strategy for getting new buses in place and putting filters and oxidation catalysts on existing buses.  That campaign started last year and the American Lung Association and Parents Voices and other community groups worked on this effort.  Member Bali stated that she is scheduling a meeting with the Department of the Environment Director, Jared Blumenfeld, to review what has happened in the last 18 months.

 

Vice-Chair Hagen asked if these issues would be a cause to cancel Laidlaw’s contract.  It was suggested that Parents Voices might be a good resource to request information about these other companies.  Member Bali stated that she would check in with the parents group.  Chair Bowen stated that he would forward the names of two school bus oriented organizations in Southern and Northern California for Member Bali to connect with.  Member St. Jean suggested involving Ms. Karen Cohn, DPH Asthma Task Force, as she is doing a lot of work with the janitors at the School District on asthma triggers and cleaning agents. 

 

Public Comment: Unidentified Speaker stated that Laidlaw is part of a union and it may become a union issue.  

 

12.  INFORMATION and DISCUSSION:  New Business/Future Agenda Items.  Future agenda items were discussed throughout the meeting.  Additional items discussed: (1) consider whether the Task Force should request the Board of Supervisors to extend its sunset date beyond December 31, 2007; (2) Member Bali asked if a discussion should be held on developing a list of priorities on activities that should be completed before the sunset date in case it is not extended.

 

13.  PUBLIC COMMENTS:  Members of the public may address the Task Force on matters that are within the Task Force’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.

 

Mr. David Gavrich of LB Railco, who runs the railroad and railyard at the Port of San Francisco, stated that they announced at the last Port Commission meeting their goal of going to 100% biodiesel by the end of the year in all of their locomotives, cranes, forklifts, and basically everything.  They would like to be the first railroad in the country to be 100% biodiesel.  Mr. Gavrich stated that to help them with this effort they have an intern from Columbia University that will be calling members for information.  In an effort to reduce their carbon footprint, LB Railco is working with Member Jordan, who is doing engineering work with them on a transloading biodiesel, to bring in tanker cars so that they would not have to be brought in from Sacramento and other locations.

 

Ms. Heidi Quante, Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance, stated that the organization is looking to create a seal that would certify sustainably produced biodiesel in the United States.  Ms. Quante offered to provide references to other cities nationwide that have produced commercial sized biodiesel facilities.

 

Ms. Michelle Swiggers discussed her plan of opening a B100 station that makes biodiesel commercially available to the public in San Francisco.  Ms. Swiggers stated that they have completed a business plan and are working with a qualified commercial broker to help find a location.  A viable location discussed was the gas station that is located at 20th and Valencia that is being used as a car lot right now.  Ms. Swiggers stated that she appreciates what the Task Force is doing on providing incentives and requested assistance or contacts in helping them find the ideal location in San Francisco to sign a lease and/or potentially purchase in order to start selling biodiesel to the public.  Member Mackin recommended (1) looking at a former gas station such as the one on 20th and Valencia in order to not worry about the change of use, as it would require an EIR, a community process, a traffic plan, etc. and (2) to communicate with people that own that gas station to make it a dual use in order to offset the high real estate cost.  Vice-Chair Hagen suggested the former Shell station on Market and Sanchez as everything there is still intact except for the pumps.

 

14.  ADJOURNMENT.  The Biodiesel Access Task Force meeting adjourned at 11:58 a.m.

 

Respectfully submitted by,

 

Monica Fish, Task Force Secretary

 


** Copies of explanatory documents are available at (1) the Task Force office, 11 Grove Street, San Francisco, California between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., (2) upon request to the Task Force Secretary, at telephone number 415-355-3709 or via e-mail at Monica.Fish@sfgov.org, or (3) on the meeting website as attachments to the agendas or meeting minutes.   

 

Approved:   June 21, 2007

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