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New Requirements for San Francisco Bay-Area Digital Print Providers

Air-quality standards are applicable to suppliers as well as print shops.




Changes to the Graphic Arts rule for California’s Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) went into effect on July 1, 2009, reports Marci Kinter at SGIA. There are new requirements for those engaged in digital-printing operations, screenprinting facilities, and suppliers selling product into the Bay Area.

Digital-printing operations: These new requirements impact facilities operating any digital-output device that uses solvent-based or UV/EB inks, Kinter points out. Additionally, if a facility uses water-based systems on a device with the capacity to operate at print speeds of at last 10,000 square feet/hour, then these requirements apply. Shops are required to:
• Maintain a list of all inks, coatings, adhesives,
and solvents used;
• Document the VOC content of each product;
• Maintain records for three years; and
• Record on a monthly basis the type and amount of each material used and keep these records for three years.

If an operation emits more than 75 pounds of VOC per month, but less than 400 pounds of VOC per month, the shop must register with the District. Screenprinting operations: The applicability threshold for this rule has been changed. All screenprinting facilities operating in the district with VOC emissions of 75 pounds or more per month must comply with all rule requirements. This includes material-usage limits as well as recordkeeping requirements. Additionally, new permitting/registration requirements were adopted. If a facility emits less than 75 pounds of VOC per month, then it doesn’t need to register or obtain a permit. If the facility emits more than 75 pounds, but less than 400 pounds of VOC per month, then the facility must register with the BAAQMD.

Manufacturers and suppliers: In addition, says Kinter, the rule contains new requirements for manufacturers and suppliers who sell products to facilities in the BAAQMD. Effective July 1, 2009:
• All products sold into the District, including products for digital-printing operations, must include the VOC content of the product on their Material Safety Data Sheets;
• Products manufactured for use must be in containers with labels that include the VOC content of the product and manufacturer’s recommended dilution or mix ratio; and
• This new requirement applies to all products manufactured after July 1, 2009, but not to products currently in the supply-chain system.






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