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Pinedale Online > News > January 2017 > WYDEQ issues Ozone Action Day for Friday, January 20, 2017

January 19 2017 ozone. Photo by WYDEQ.
January 19 2017 ozone
1 Hour Average

Boulder Station. Photo by WYDEQ.
Boulder Station

Big Piney station. Photo by WYDEQ.
Big Piney station
WYDEQ issues Ozone Action Day for Friday, January 20, 2017
January 19, 2017

The Air Quality Division (AQD) of Wyoming’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is designating Friday, January 20, 2017, as an Ozone Action Day for the Upper Green River Basin, in Sublette County. Current information on ozone levels can be found at

New standards for ozone are 70ppb for the 8 hour average. The Big Piney and Boulder monitoring stations have been reading over 70PPB for the 1 Hour Average today (Thursday, January 19, 2017).

The Big Piney monitoring station was reading 73ppb for the 1 Hour Average and 59ppb for the 8 Hour Average at 4:00PM. The Boulder monitoring station read 79ppb for the 1 Hour Average and 59ppb for the 8 Hour Average at 4:00PM.

What is an Ozone Action Day?
The WDEQ-AQD will declare an Ozone Action Day when ground-level ozone concentrations are expected to be above the ozone standard (health based standard) based upon an evaluation of weather forecasts and ozone monitoring data. The declaration of an Action Day indicates the potential for elevated 8-hour ozone levels. The Action Day status will remain in effect for 1 day, but may be reissued on consecutive days.

When is an Ozone Action Day Declared?
During the winter months of January, February, and March, WDEQ-AQD will declare an Ozone Action Day for a 24-hour period if conditions are favorable for ozone formation. WDEQ-AQD may extend the forecasting program beyond the March 28 end date if conditions warrant. The WDEQ-AQD issues the alerts to the media, individuals, local governments, and businesses via a variety of methods including telephone, email, a printed news release, internet (e.g.,, newspapers, television, and radio. The Wyoming State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) and the Sublette County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) will assist with notifications. The declaration of an Ozone Action Day will identify a specific locale, such as the Upper Green River Basin.

Control Measures:
Upon notification from the WDEQ of an Ozone Action Day for Sublette County, Wyoming, specific contingency measures will be implemented by oil and gas companies operating in the area according to their approved action plans.

Proposed control measures include:

Vehicle Operations:
Keep vehicles tuned up and tires well inflated to increase mileage and reduce the need for refueling.
Do not overfill fuel tanks when re-fueling. Fuel creates ozone-causing vapors as it evaporates.
Tighten fuel caps.

Between operators, share best management practices for flareless completion techniques in order to reduce emissions.

Other Control Measures
Use environmentally safe paints, cleaning products and other chemicals whenever possible.
Follow manufacturers’ recommendations to use and properly seal cleaners, paints, and other chemicals so smog-forming chemicals can’t evaporate.
Share best management practices with other operators.

Short Term
During an Ozone Action Day, discretionary activities that could otherwise be rescheduled at a later date with better meteorological conditions will be limited. In addition to standard operating procedures implemented throughout the year, the following activities are suggested in response to the declaration of an Ozone Action Day:

Vehicle Operations:
Reduce idling of vehicles. Shut off all vehicle engines when activities would involve idling time greater than 5 minutes and would not put worker safety at risk.
Establish a traffic minimization program and implement specific activities in the field by delaying trips, combining tasks into one trip, carpooling, or bussing.
Reduce speed limits on the field and lease roads by 5 mph to reduce air pollution.
Postpone/reschedule non-critical vehicle trips to locations by employees and contractors.
Refuel cars and trucks after dusk, when emissions are less likely to produce ozone.

Production Operations:
Suspend and reschedule non-critical maintenance activities that would result in venting of gas.
Postpone/reschedule the blow down of wells that are needed for operational, maintenance or construction purposes where possible.
Turn down heat trace pumps to minimum temperatures with the result of lower VOC emissions during this period. o Increase surveillance of combustors, both in the control room and in the field, to ensure proper operation.
Shut-in uncontrolled facilities (e.g. single well facility with no control on the dehydrators) when environmentally and safely feasible.

Completion Operations:
Postpone initiation of completion activities that lead to VOC or NOx emissions when safely feasible.
Minimize the use of or turn off engines (e.g. water pumps, light plants) during daylight hours.

Drilling Operations:
Limit vehicle and ancillary equipment idle time.
Minimize the use of or turn off engines (e.g. water pumps, light plants) during daylight hours.
Refuel diesel tanks after dusk as possible, when emissions are less likely to produce ozone.

Field Services
Postpone initiation of blow downs.
Delay line pigging.
Suspend site activities that result in venting of gas to atmosphere.

Other Control Measures:
Where possible, perform maintenance activities that generate emissions later in the day when conditions are less favorable for the production of ozone.
Suspend and reschedule use of gasoline or diesel powered maintenance or construction equipment where possible.
Postpone non-essential construction.

Pinedale Online > News > January 2017 > WYDEQ issues Ozone Action Day for Friday, January 20, 2017

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