Better EHS systems lead to efficient and more consistent compliance programs. That’s why we developed the first end-to-end Compliance Platform for EHS professionals. It makes it easy to know what you need to do every day to deliver continued compliance across your organization.
EPCRA Applicability Flowchart
Are you subject to Tier II reporting? We've created a flowchart for Tier II applicability, going all the way to the county and city level.
Lead Acid Battery Ebook
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The Toxic Release Inventory is a resource for learning about toxic chemical releases and pollution retention activities, as reported by industrial and federal facilities.
For organizations dealing with toxic chemicals, TRI reporting is an incredibly important aspect of health and safety. Under TRI reporting, organizations must take an inventory of their toxic chemicals and must report when releases occur that are over certain dangerous thresholds. TRI reporting lists hundreds of chemicals that need to be reported, along with the TRI reporting thresholds. Toxics release information will govern what has to be reported, and EHS professionals will follow this governance.
TRI-MEWeb and the TRI Explorer are available to help organizations find out more information about the toxic chemicals that they need to track and report. There is an annual TRI reporting deadline that organizations need to meet to ensure that the local, state, and federal agencies are all aware of the chemicals they are keeping in their inventory.
Through TRI reporting, government entities can create comprehensive strategies and protocols that will govern the event of an incident. As long as the government is aware of the chemicals being used, they can create fast response disaster preparedness plans. But if they aren't aware of the chemicals that are being used in their area, they won't be able to respond quickly during an incident. Chemical spills are often more dangerous the longer they are allowed to go on.
For the organization, TRI reporting also gives them a chance to explore their chemical inventory, refresh their knowledge on their chemical thresholds, and create their disaster preparedness response plan. Organizations should always have a comprehensive response plan and team in place to respond to chemical spills and other potential disasters, as they could cause damage to the health of their employees, citizens, and the surrounding environment.
EHS professionals who are managing TRI reporting can use software to simplify the process.
In 1986, ECPRA (Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act) was created to help communities plan for chemical emergencies. Today, EHS professionals use toxic release inventory data, definitions, and maps to help with their reporting.
ECPRA governs toxic release inventory data, the toxic release inventory definition (based on the chemicals that are known to be hazardous), and even a toxic release inventory map, which citizens can use. Citizens can use the EPA TRI National Analysis Where You Live tool to see whether there are releases in their area or look up the EPCRA section 313 chemical list for reporting year 2019 to know which chemicals are being reported on. NAICS TRI reporting, TCEQ TRI reporting, and the TRI National Analysis 2018 are all examples of resources that are available to the public.
The goal of EPCRA is both improved disaster control and improved transparency. In the past, TRI reporting industries were still required to clean up toxic spills, but they weren't necessarily required to report these issues quickly. A TRI reporting spreadsheet can now be used to quickly report which chemicals are being used even before a disaster occurs, so local, state, and federal governments can create response plans.
EPCRA was created in response to the Bhopal disaster, during which thousands were injured following a chemical spill. Because people didn't know that the Bhopal disaster had occurred quickly enough and that the chemicals were being used in the area, they weren't able to respond as quickly as they otherwise might have been able to.
Companies without TRI reporting may not have their own disaster preparedness plans in place, or may not have suitable plans. The government has to be aware of the chemicals that are being used so they can create their response teams. Part of TRI reporting is that local firefighters need to be aware of the chemicals in use. Otherwise, if there was an incident at a plant nearby, the firefighters might be exposed to things that they weren't aware were present.
Thus, TRI reporting is an incredibly important part of chemical containment and disaster readiness. EHS professionals can track everything through their platforms, which makes it easier to complete their reporting. Without platforms, it can be difficult, as hundreds of chemicals need to be tracked, and they all have different reporting thresholds. Further, these chemicals need to be reported to a wide array of agencies, and there may be different deadlines for each.
Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) lists vary from year to year. The toxic release inventory act is meant to govern chemicals that could be dangerous, as well as their toxic thresholds, and this information is updated from time to time.
The Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) lists outline the chemicals that need to be reported to local, state, and federal agencies, and that have to be tracked in the event of chemical release. EHS professionals use these lists to track their inventory and report it and will need to use them to determine whether a release is reportable. However, the TRI reporting guidance does change year to year, and the TRI national analysis is re-analyzed and completed at intervals. Thus, to follow the toxic release inventory act, EHS professionals need to remain aware of current reporting standards.
The Toxic Release Inventory due date has to be followed strictly by EHS professionals. The purpose of Toxic Release Inventory is to make sure that the government and the public remain apprised of the chemicals that each company is using, and so everything must be reported in a timely fashion. EHS professionals will need to go over Toxic Release Inventory questions and Toxic Release information.
But because it does change from year to year, EHS professionals may need Toxic Release Inventory software. These software platforms will be updated automatically with the information as it changes, so the organization itself doesn't have to track the changes that occur year to year. EHS professionals will be notified when chemicals are removed or added and when thresholds change, so they can be more conscientious about their disaster planning.
For most EHS professionals, EHS platforms are an incredibly important part of managing TRI reporting. Without it, an EHS professional would need to manually review hundreds of chemicals and would need to update their knowledge every year. They would need to track deadlines for multiple government entities, and could potentially miss the important deadlines altogether. But EHS platforms can automate quite a lot of the process, which doesn't just make the job easier for the professional, but also makes it safer for everyone involved.
PFAS have contaminated military bases, construction sites, and many areas in Michigan around large bodies of water: Ann Arbor, Huron River, and sites around Pennsylvania.
When it comes to chemicals, few are as ubiquitous as PFAS. PFAS contamination military bases and the PFAS contamination site tracker have become important for those who are concerned about potential PFAS exposure.
PFAS has been used for many decades now, discovered by 3M as a water-resistant and stain-resistant chemical. It is used today on rugs, food wrappers, and a multitude of commercial and consumer products, but in low thresholds. Despite these low thresholds, it can still be a danger, because it is known as a "forever chemical." Once introduced into the environment, or even the human body, it can continue to linger.
Because PFAS is now in the water supply (and can be found in 99 percent of Americans), it has to be actively removed from the groundwater. PFAS filtration is being used to remove it from the water, but inside of people, it can cause some serious symptoms, such as liver damage and cancer. It can also cause birth defects, low birth weight, or early termination of pregnancies. PFAS affects animals, and through affecting local wildlife it can also affect food chains. It can affect fish, which lowers fish yields.
Those who are concerned about PFAS contamination can take a look at the PFAS contamination map Pennsylvania, Michigan, or the rest of the nation. PFAS Michigan Lakes, PFAS Michigan Ann Arbor, and PFAS Michigan Huron River are particularly high. And since there are PFAS in food wrappers and other products, it can be difficult to avoid. When it comes to PFAS meaning in construction, construction entities may also check contamination before moving forward, and industrial use of PFAS can also be dangerous if it's allowed to be introduced into the groundwater.
PFAS is still in use in many industrial areas because it is very convenient. As an example, it's often used in firefighting foam. But efforts are being made to ensure that it doesn't get introduced into the environment. Because PFAS are still very useful, though, it cannot be removed completely from commercial and consumer goods. Instead, it simply remains below a certain threshold in most consumer goods, which has been found to be not individually harmful.
For citizens that have been exposed to PFAS, the treatment plans are unfortunately limited. This is one reason why people should be very aware of moving into areas that may have PFAS, or should be aware of the PFAS chemicals around them.
A lot of care is taken into not introducing PFAS into the groundwater in large quantities now, specifically because it cannot be removed except through intentional attempts at filtration. Unfortunately, because decades of it already exist within the water supply, it's already a problem. Citizens should be aware of how much PFAS is in their groundwater, and should react accordingly.
If you're interested in how Encamp helps EHS managers deliver consistent processes and first-rate compliance programs, learn more at our free webinar.