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AQMD to Address Salton Sea Stench Issue

The board will consider using nearly $200,000 to establish a hydrogen sulfide monitoring network near the Salton Sea. Last year odors from the area spread around Southern California.

The South Coast Air Quality Management District's governing board is scheduled to vote Friday on proposals including one designed to address a hydrogen sulfide issue that last year blanketed Southern California in a foul odor.

The AQMD board will consider proposals to replace and upgrade school buses at the Coachella Valley and Desert Sands school districts and to install hydrogen sulfide monitoring stations at the Salton Sea, according to Riverside County Supervisor John Benoit's office.

The board is responding to odors from the Salton Sea that spread around Southern California last September. Residents of South Pasadena and other San Gabriel Valley cities reported smelling the foul odor.

Board members will consider using nearly $200,000 to establish a hydrogen sulfide monitoring network near the sea. Two monitoring stations, proposed in Mecca and on Torres-Martinez tribal land, would evaluate sulfur-containing gases released from the area.

The AQMD has earmarked $2.4 million to replace eight Coachella Valley Unified School district diesel buses with compressed natural gas buses. If approved by the board, the money will also equip 49 Coachella Valley and two Desert Sands school district buses with particulate traps to reduce toxic diesel emissions.

The funding will come from the Carl Moyer Program AB 923 Fund, which uses smog abatement and tire fees to fund grants for clean engines, vehicles and equipment, according to Benoit's office.

The AQMD board will meet at 9 a.m. Friday in Diamond Bar. The agenda is posted at www.aqmd.gov.

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