Guidance document on Benzene in Gasoline Regulations: chapter 6


Questions on Part 2 of the Regulations

Part 2 -- Option for a Yearly Pool Average

P2.1 Does Part 2 apply to me?

Part 2 of the regulations only applies to those who have elected to comply with a requirement on the basis of a yearly pool average.


Section 14: Application

14.1 Can I choose to meet one requirement on the basis of a yearly pool average and the other on the basis of a per-litre limits?

Yes. For details, refer to Questions 14.2 to 14.4.


14.2 As a primary supplier, can I choose to meet the requirements for benzene on the basis of a yearly pool average and meet the requirements for the benzene emissions number on a per-litre basis?

Yes, refer to paragraph 14(1)(a). In this case, the compositional requirements of sections 4 and 16 must be complied with. The model parameters, other than benzene, are not explicitly required to be measured or recorded. As, well, the compliance plan and the audit need not address the BEN or any model parameter other than benzene. The compositional requirements of subsection 3(2) must always be complied with.


14.3 As a primary supplier, can I choose to meet the requirements for the benzene emissions number on the basis of a yearly pool average and meet the requirements for benzene on a per-litre basis?

Yes, refer to paragraph 14(1)(b). In this case, the compositional requirements of subsection 3(1) and section 17 must be complied with. The compliance plan and the audit would not need to specifically address benzene, other than as one of the model parameters. The compositional requirements of subsection 3(2) must always be complied with.


14.4 As a primary supplier, can I choose to meet both the requirements for benzene and the benzene emissions number on the basis of a yearly pool average?

Yes, refer to paragraph 14(1)(c). In this case, the compositional requirements of sections 16 and 17 must be complied with. The compositional requirements of subsection 3(2) must always be complied with.


14.5 If I have more than one facility, can I choose different options for each of the facilities?

Yes, unless the facilities are combined under section 18.

For example, if you have two refineries, you can elect to meet the requirements on the basis of a yearly pool average for one refinery and on a per-litre basis for the other. (In the latter case no election is required, as the per-litre basis is the default option.) The same is true for import pools. For example, if you import into Ontario and Quebec, you can elect to meet the requirements on the basis of a yearly pool average for one provincial import pool and on a per-litre basis for the other. (Again, in the latter case no election is required, as the per-litre basis is the default option.)


14.6 If I have more than one facility on the basis of a yearly pool average, must I meet the yearly pool average requirement at each of my facilities or can I combine them?

You must meet the yearly pool average at each of your facilities, unless the facilities are combined under section 18.


Section 15: Election -- Yearly Pool Average

15.1 What is the difference between compliance options?

If you do not elect to meet the compositional requirements on the basis of a yearly pool average, then every batch of gasoline that you supply must meet the per-litre requirements of Part 1. There are fewer administrative requirements associated with this option since any batch can be readily tested for compliance.

If you elect to meet the compositional requirements on the basis of a yearly pool average, then your yearly pool average must not exceed the yearly pool limit and every batch of gasoline must also meet the never-to-be-exceeded caps. This option provides more flexibility; however there are also more administrative requirements.


15.2 How is the election made?

You must inform Environment Canada in writing at least 60 days prior to the beginning of the calendar year for which the election is being made (i.e., by May 2 for 1999 and by November 2 for any subsequent year). The election cannot be changed part way through a calendar year.


15.3 Do I have to make an election every year?

No. You need to make an election for a yearly pool average only once.


15.4 What happens if I do not make an election?

If you do not elect for a yearly pool average, then you must meet the requirements of the regulations on the per-litre basis.


15.5 Can I change my compliance option?

Yes. If you wish to change options, you must inform Environment Canada in writing at least 60 days prior to the beginning of the calendar year for which the election is being changed (i.e., by November 2). Changes cannot be made part way through a calendar year. Once an election for the yearly pool average has been made, it is in place until Environment Canada is informed to the contrary.


Section 16: Benzene -- Prohibition

16.1 What is the difference between the 0.95% limit and the 1.5% limit?

The yearly pool average for benzene must not exceed 0.95% by volume -- any one batch may be above or below this value. However, no batch may exceed the cap of 1.5% by volume.


Section 17: Benzene Emissions Number -- Prohibition and Alternative Limits

17.1 What is the difference between the three limits that are specified?

The yearly pool average for the benzene emissions number must not exceed 59.5 -- any one batch may be above or below this value. No batch may exceed the limit of 102 if the batch is supplied during the summer or 132 if the batch is supplied during the winter.


17.2 How were these limits derived?

Please refer to Question O.2 (in the section on other questions).


17.3 What is an alternative limit?

An alternative limit is a facility-specific limit based on a facility's (or provincial import pool's) historical gasoline quality. You can elect to use an alternative limit instead of a limit specified in subsection 17(1).


17.4 Why must the alternative limit be based on 1994, 1995 or 1996 gasoline quality?

The concept of a base year was used in the U.S. reformulated gasoline program. Whereas the U.S. used 1990 as the base year (the year in which the Clean Air Act Amendments were passed), Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment selected the year 1994 for Canada because:

  • 1994 is the year prior to the introduction of reformulated gasoline in the U.S., which may have impacted Canadian markets;
  • 1994 is the first year prior to the recommendations to the CCME and therefore most appropriate as a baseline; and
  • 1994 is the first year that detailed data on benzene and aromatics were available.

Some primary suppliers underwent equipment modifications in 1994 or committed to other changes. Also, some primary suppliers do not have the necessary data to establish a 1994 baseline. In order for the regulations to provide flexibility in establishing a primary supplier's baseline, the regulations allow a primary supplier to use data from any one of the following years: 1994, 1995 or 1996.


17.5 How and when do I apply for an alternative limit?

A written application for an alternative limit must include laboratory data and volumetric data, values for the alternative limits established in accordance with subsection 17(3) of the regulations, and evidence that the data has been verified by an auditor. The application must be sent to the appropriate regional office of Environment Canada by registered mail or courier before December 1, 1998 (addresses are provided in Appendix A).


17.6 Can I elect to meet the standard limit for one of the limits and alternative limits for the others?

Yes, refer to paragraph 17(2)(b). A primary supplier electing to meet an alternative limit for the yearly pool average limit or the summer or winter never-to-be-exceeded caps need not specify alternatives for the other limits. In this case, the standard limits would apply.


17.7 What is the difference between the two methods for computing the alternative limits?

Method A, set out in paragraphs 17(3)(a), volumetrically averages the benzene emissions number of each batch to derive the annual average for the benzene emissions number.

Method B, set out in paragraphs 17(3)(b), volumetrically averages each of the model parameters of each batch to derive seasonal averages for each model parameter. The summer and winter benzene emissions numbers are computed from the seasonal averaged model parameters, and are then volumetrically averaged to derive the annual average for the benzene emissions number.

Method A requires data on all model parameters for all batches supplied during the year; Method B does not.


17.8 Who must audit my data?

The auditor must be certified by a nationally or internationally recognized accreditation organization to be able to undertake ISO 9000 product quality assessments. (Note: for the purposes of these regulations, the auditor is not required to undertake an ISO 9000 assessment.) The auditor must be independent of the primary supplier and not an employee of the primary supplier.


17.9 How is the audit carried out?

The auditor must verify that the laboratory and volumetric data represents the gasoline supplied by the primary supplier during the applicable year, and that the proposed alternative limits were correctly calculated. The person who undertakes the one-time verification of the alternative limits need not be the same person who undertakes the annual audit required by section 22.


17.10 How will Environment Canada determine if the data provided in support of an alternative limit represents my gasoline?

Environment Canada will assess alternative limits by reviewing submitted data, reviewing the auditor's assessment, and comparing it to Environment Canada's data base on gasoline composition.


17.11 Can I rescind my alternative limit if I so choose?

Yes, refer to subsection 17(5). You must notify Environment Canada in writing of your decision.


Section 18: Calculating a Yearly Pool Average

18.1 What types of gasoline do I include in my yearly pool average?

Only gasoline that you have identified as complying gasoline and northern winter complying gasoline are included in your yearly pool average. You must exclude all batches of gasoline that were:

  • identified as another type,
  • exported by you (or your agent or affiliate) regardless of how it is identified, and
  • complying gasoline obtained by you from an other person.


18.2 If I buy gasoline from someone can I include it in my yearly pool average?

Generally no, you must exclude all batches of complying gasoline from the calculation of your yearly pool average (refer to subparagraph 18(2)(b)(iii)). However, if you purchase gasoline-like blendstock, then you may include the batch in your yearly pool average provided that you blend or further refine the gasoline-like blendstock to meet the compositional requirements of the regulations.


18.3 If I only buy gasoline from refiners or importers, but do not refine, blend or import myself, what do I include in my pool?

If you only buy complying gasoline from others (e.g., a wholesaler), then you are not a primary supplier, and therefore you do not have to calculate a yearly pool average or meet any of the requirements placed upon a primary supplier.

You would, however, be subject to the following requirements:

  • you cannot sell gasoline with a benzene level in excess of 1.5% by volume (subsection 3(2)); and
  • upon request by Environment Canada, you must provide Environment Canada with gasoline samples and information on the names and addresses of the persons that sold or provided the gasoline to you and the date of the transfer (section 11).

If you buy gasoline-like blendstock, there are requirements that you must fulfill (refer to questions on section 13).


18.4 If I sell a batch of complying gasoline to another person who then exports the batch do I exclude the batch of gasoline from my yearly pool average?

If a batch of gasoline is exported by your agent or affiliate, the batch must be excluded from your yearly pool average.

If a batch is sold to an independent party, you are required to include it in your yearly pool average since you do not control its final destination.


18.5 What gasoline pools can I combine?

Gasoline pools can be combined, provided that the pools meet certain conditions (refer to subsections 18(3) to (6)). The following pools can be combined, provided that the conditions specified in section 18 are met:

  • gasoline imported directly into a refinery or blending facility may be included in that facility's pool;
  • the pool for a blending facility that blends gasoline-like blendstock into complying gasoline may be combined with the refinery or import pool from which the blending facility received gasoline-like blendstock;
  • the pool for a blending facility that blends complying gasoline with commercially pure oxygenates or butane may be combined with the refinery or import pool from which the blending facility received the gasoline; and
  • pools within a province or territory may be combined if you only produce or import small amounts of gasoline (i.e., less than 12 000 m3 per year).

Note that all gasoline imported by a primary supplier into a province forms one provincial import pool for that primary supplier.


18.6 As an importer, why do I have to keep separate pools for each province that I import?

Similar to refiners and blenders which have to keep separate pools for each facility, importers must keep a separate pool for each province that they import into. This is to prevent regional disparities in benzene levels.


18.7 Can I get credit for the benefits of blending with commercially pure oxygenate or commercially pure butane?

Yes, under certain conditions (refer to subsection 18(5) of the regulations).


18.8 For the year 1999, do I include gasoline that I supplied during the period January 1 to June 30 in the calculation of my yearly pool average?

No. Only gasoline supplied between July 1 and December 31 is included in the calculation of your 1999 yearly pool average.


18.9 Does "province" of importation include the territories?

Yes.


Section 19: Procedures for Sampling and Analysis

19.1 How often must I sample if I have elected for a yearly pool average?

A sample must be taken from each batch supplied. There are only two exceptions to this (and each has certain conditions that must be met):

  • For imports, if one or more cargo truck or railway cars pick up gasoline from one storage tank (and the gasoline is not modified in the storage tank between or during the pick ups), only one sample need be collected for all the cargo tanks and railway cars. This can be collected from the storage tank or one of the cargo trucks or railway cars (refer to subsection 19(2) of the regulations).
  • If gasoline-like blendstock is sent from a refinery or import point to a blending facility that blends the gasoline-like blendstock with commercially pure oxygenates or butane, the sample may be taken from the gasoline-like blendstock instead of the resulting gasoline (refer to subsection 19(3) of the regulations).


19.2 How often must I sample if I have not elected for a yearly pool average?

You must sample enough to ensure that the information you provide in Schedule 3 is accurate. The requirements of section 19 do not apply to you. Furthermore, there is no requirement for you to retain any of the samples.


19.3 If I have elected for a yearly pool average, do I have to analyze every sample?

Generally yes, a sample must be analyzed from each batch identified as complying gasoline. However, there are exceptions:

  • samples can be combined under specified circumstances into a composite sample representing a number of batches (refer to Question 19.4),
  • U.S. or California records of analysis for U.S. gasoline can replace the analysis requirements, and
  • starting in 2002, it is possible to use a statistical quality assurance program and only analyze some of the samples (refer to Questions Question19.6 and Question19.8).


19.4 Can samples be combined?

For the purposes of analyzing the composition of the gasoline, samples can be combined under specified conditions and only the composite sample need be analyzed. The conditions under which samples can be combined are specified in subsection 19(5) of the regulations. The composite sample may represent batches supplied for not more than a 30-day period or amounting to not more than 1000 m3, whichever requires more frequent analysis.


19.5 Do I keep the composite sample or the original samples?

The original samples must be retained; the composite sample need not be retained.


19.6 What is a "statistical quality assurance program"?

A statistical quality assurance program is a combination of testing and statistical techniques used to determine whether gasoline meets a particular compositional requirement.


19.7 What is the difference between a "quality control program" and a "statistical quality assurance program"?

A quality control program demonstrates that the laboratory is accurately measuring the composition of the gasoline. A statistical quality assurance program allows you the option of not having to analyze every sample. Both terms are defined in subsection 1(1) of the regulations.


19.8 How and when can I apply for a "statistical quality assurance program"?

A statistical quality assurance program cannot be used prior to 2002. In order to use a statistical quality assurance program, you must apply to Environment Canada at least 60 days before its use and provide a report describing the program and demonstrating its reliability. Based on two years of data, the program must give equivalent or conservative results compared to analyzing every batch.


19.9 Why can't I use a statistical quality assurance program sooner?

During the period 1998 to 2001, there will be considerable changes to the world's gasoline:

  • first regulatory use of the Complex Model in the U.S. occurs in 1998;
  • U.S. anti-dumping requirements change in 1998;
  • Phase 2 of the U.S. reformulated gasoline program commences in 2000;
  • Europe's cleaner gasoline program commences in 2000; and
  • British Columbia's requirements come into place between 1999 to 2001.

After these initial critical (and potentially volatile) years and after the new federal requirements have been in effect for a few years, a statistical quality assurance program will be allowed if you can demonstrate its reliability.


19.10 Does the "statistical quality assurance program" reduce the number of samples that need to be taken?

No. A statistical quality assurance program only affects the number of samples that have to be analyzed not the number of samples taken.


19.11 What circumstances affect the use of a "statistical quality assurance program"?

Since both the source of a refinery's crude oil and any installation or modification of equipment can affect the gasoline composition, a statistical quality assurance program will continue to be acceptable only as long as the program continues to give equivalent or conservative results compared to the standard requirements.

As well, a primary supplier may not use a statistical quality assurance program if the primary supplier has been convicted of an offence in respect of these regulations.


19.12 Must I keep a sample even if I do not analyze it?

Where you are required by the regulations to collect a sample, you must retain the sample. This allows Environment Canada to conduct its own tests on the sample and verify the primary supplier's records.


19.13 How long must samples be kept?

Samples must be kept either:

  • until the thirtieth day after the sample was analyzed, or
  • until the day upon which the twentieth batch has been supplied after the sample was analyzed.


If the analysis was done on a composite sample, all samples that made up the composite sample would have to be kept until one of the above conditions is met. Otherwise, the maximum number of samples that need be kept at one time is 20. There is no requirement for primary suppliers on a per-litre limit to retain samples.


19.14 Why must samples be kept in Canada?

Outside Canada, Environment Canada has no jurisdiction and cannot ensure access to samples and records that are necessary to assess compliance with the regulations. Therefore, samples and records must be retained in Canada.


19.15 If, within a refinery, I add commercially pure butane/oxygenates to gasoline which meets the compositional requirements of the regulations, do I take a sample from (and do the analysis on) the gasoline before or after the addition of the commercially pure butane/oxygenate?

You must sample and analyze the finished gasoline that leaves the refinery.


Section 20: Record of Composition

20.1 What records do I have to keep on gasoline composition if I have elected for a yearly pool average?

A record must be kept for each batch and must link the sample to the batch from which it was taken. This record must include the type of oxygenate added, if any, the measured values for each model parameter, and the resulting BEN. A running average must also be computed and recorded for the model parameters and the BEN.

For composite samples, the values obtained for the composite sample are used for the records for the original batches that made up the composite sample. For those samples not analyzed because of the use of a statistical quality assurance program, no value is recorded.


20.2 Are these records in addition to those made under section 9?

Yes, although they can be made on the same physical record.


20.3 Where and for how long are the records kept?

All records required by these regulations must be kept in Canada for three years after they are made.


20.4 Can I use records required by the U.S. federal or California state governments to provide the information on composition?

Yes. Paragraph 20(c) of the regulations refer to subsection 19(4).


Section 21: Compliance Plan

21.1 What is a compliance plan?

A compliance plan is a document that you prepare. It gives details on how you are going to demonstrate to Environment Canada that the yearly pool average is being met.


21.2 Why is a compliance plan necessary?

Because each facility and operation are different, the regulations cannot address all eventualities in how primary suppliers will demonstrate compliance. Instead, the regulations require primary suppliers on a yearly pool average to prepare and submit a compliance plan with details on how they will demonstrate that they will meet the yearly pool average.


21.3 Do I have to submit a compliance plan?

You must submit a compliance plan only if you have elected to use a yearly pool average.


21.4 What information must I include in my compliance plan?

The compliance plan must describe how you will demonstrate that the yearly pool average will be met. It must explain how, where and when samples are to be collected, how they are to be analyzed and recorded, and the location where samples and records are to be kept. An acceptable compliance plan must clearly present details on the systems, practices and procedures you will use to demonstrate to Environment Canada that the yearly pool average is being met.


21.5 Must the compliance plan be submitted annually to Environment Canada?

No. The compliance plan is submitted prior to the election to meet a requirement on the basis of a yearly pool average. A revised compliance plan must be submitted whenever there are changes.


21.6 Where and when do I have to send my compliance plan?

Send your compliance plan by registered mail or by courier to the appropriate regional office of Environment Canada (addresses are listed in Appendix A). You must submit it by February 1, 1999 for the year 1999 and, for subsequent years, by August 4 of the year before the first year for which you have elected to meet a requirement on the basis of a yearly pool average.


21.7 How do I inform Environment Canada of any changes to my compliance plan?

You must submit updated compliance plans at least 45 days prior to the change to the above address.


Section 22: Audit

22.1 Do I have to have an independent audit?

You must have an annual audit if you have elected to use a yearly pool average.


22.2 Why is an independent audit required?

The independent audit is one component of the overall compliance program for a primary supplier who has elected to use a yearly pool average. It provides independent verification that a primary supplier's systems, practices and procedures are appropriate to demonstrate compliance and that required records and reports are complete and accurate.


22.3 What qualifications must an auditor have?

The auditor must be certified by a nationally or internationally recognized accreditation organization to be able to undertake ISO 9000 product quality assessments. (Note: for the purposes of these regulations, the auditor is not required to undertake an ISO 9000 assessment.) The auditor must be independent of the primary supplier and not an employee of the primary supplier.


22.4 Where can I find a person capable of undertaking an audit?

The following organizations will be able to assist in finding a person capable of undertaking an ISO 9000 assessment: the Standards Council of Canada, the International Registrar of Certified Auditors, and the Registrar Accreditation Board. The addresses of these organizations are provided in Appendix B.


22.5 What must my auditor do?

Each year, the auditor must undertake a methodical examination and verification of your systems, practices and procedures with the purpose of determining, in the auditor's opinion, the appropriateness of them to demonstrate compliance. The auditor must also verify that the required records and reports are complete and accurate. The auditor's report must assess your compliance during the year, and report on any discrepancies and deviations.


22.6 What must be reported to Environment Canada and when?

You must submit the auditor's report to Environment Canada by May 31 following the year that the audit covered. This report must contain information on the audit procedures, a compliance assessment by the auditor and a description of any inaccuracies and deviations, as well as basic information on the primary supplier, the auditor and the volume of gasoline produced or imported.


22.7 Can one audit report cover all of my facilities?

Yes. Note that one audit report must cover all facilities combined under section 18.


22.8 Will Environment Canada pay for my audit?

No. Engaging and compensating the auditor are your responsibility.


22.9 If I do not supply gasoline during the year, am I still required to have an audit?

No.

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