Fireworks Permits Launched For San Diego FireworkS DiSPLayS over San Diego Harbor will require a water- pollution permit following the May 11 decision by the regional water Quality review board there (see “California May Snuff out Fireworks,” BoatU.S. Magazine, april/May 2011). Citing concerns about water con- tamination from potassium perchlorate, a chemical used in fireworks, the board ruled that pyrotechnic displays consti- tute a source of pollution, and can be regulated under the federal Clean water act. The U.S. environmental Protection agency is currently considering regulation of perchlorate in drinking water because it may limit the human thyroid’s ability to produce growth hormones. Julie Heckman, executive director of the american Pyrotechnics association, said the new permits, which in San Diego will cost almost $1,500, could be pro- hibitive for municipal fireworks displays, where costs are often covered by local sponsors. Heckman says perchlorate, which occurs both naturally and through manufacturing, is used for color enhance- ment and as a propellant in fireworks, which she says contain low amounts of the chemical compared, for instance, to commonly available road flares. She says perchlorate is used in fireworks partly because it has a track record of safety and predictability — important qualities in fire- works displays. at press time, Heckman hadn’t heard reports of any other jurisdic- tions imposing similar requirements. “Thankfully,” Heckman says, “what’s happening in San Diego is not gaining traction elsewhere.” — C.l.
e15 PUMP warning aPProveD
In the ContInuIng saga of efforts to increase the amount of ethanol blended into gasoline, from 10 to 15 percent, in June, the u.s. environmental Protec-
tion agency (ePa) approved warning labels that boat-
ers will have to watch for when filling their tanks. last
year the agency approved 15-percent ethanol for use
in automobiles, but only in cars and light trucks of
model year 2001 and newer. under the ePa rule, it’s il-
legal to use e15 in older cars, in boats, numerous other off-road
applications, and small engines such as lawn mowers and generators.
In an attempt to prevent inadvertent misfueling, the warning label will be
mandated on all pumps dispensing e15 and specifically advises not to use the blend in
boats. there is no requirement for retailers to modify pumps to physically prevent misfu-
eling so when e15 enters the marketplace, consumers will have to be especially vigilant.
the ethanol industry must still go though a number of federal and state regulatory steps
so there may be a delay before boaters see e15 at gas stations or marina fuel docks. — R.l.
THe enD oF THe aTLanTiC
June 1 has traditionally been the start of the
Atlantic hurricane season, but the end date
has slowly shifted outward, from October
31 to November 15, until its current date of
November 30. For up-to-date hurricane
information, always visit
12 | Boatu.s. Magazine
oCTober | noveMber 2011