EPA Analysis Shows Decrease in 2010 Toxic Chemical Releases in Connecticut Reply

Release Date: 01/05/2012
Contact Information: David Deegan, (617) 918-1017

(Boston, Mass. – Jan. 5, 2012) – EPA’s most recent Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) data is now available for the reporting year of 2010.  TRI reporting provides Americans with vital information about their communities by publishing information on toxic chemical disposals and releases into the air, land and water, as well as information on waste management and pollution prevention activities in neighborhoods across the country.

In Connecticut, the reporting data shows that overall releases of pollutants to the environment have decreased since the previous reporting year (2009). TRI information is a key part of EPA’s efforts to provide greater access to environmental information and get information to the public as quickly as possible. TRI was recently recognized by the Aspen Institute as one of the 10 major ways that EPA has strengthened America.

During 2010, the latest year for which data are available, approximately 20.6 million pounds of chemicals were released in the six New England states, a reduction of about 287,337 pounds. In Connecticut, 320 facilities reported in 2010 approximately 2.7 million pounds (a decrease of 633,694 pounds). Approximately 47 percent of releases in Connecticut were emitted to the air during 2010. Across the U.S. in 2010, 3.93 billion pounds of toxic chemicals were released into the environment, a 16 percent increase from 2009.

To read the full release visit: http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/6d651d23f5a91b768525735900400c28/8bfd605992a749838525797c0079fff1!OpenDocument

 Additional links:

TRI in Connecticut Fact Sheet (http://www.epa.gov/triexplorer/statefactsheet.htm)
National information on TRI (http://www.epa.gov/tri/)

For more information, please contact Lucy Servidio at 508-970-0033 ext. 114 or lservidio@capaccio.com.

MassDEP News – Important Time Sensitive Notice/TUR Regulations Reply

Dear Facility Manager or Toxics Use Reduction Planner:

I am writing to remind you that 2012 is a planning year under the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) and that facilities covered by TURA are required to complete their TURA plan (or in some cases an Environmental Management System or Resource Conservation plan) for this planning cycle by July 1, 2012

Employee Notification
Please note the TUR regulations1 require that notice to employees regarding the upcoming planning process must be completed by January 1, 2012.  If a facility is unsure of which type of plan it will develop, it should notify its employees that the facility will be developing either a Toxics Use Reduction (TUR), Resource Conservation (RC) or Environmental Management Systems (EMS) Plan.

For further information:  http://www.mass.gov/dep/toxics/tura/planning.htm .  Because there have been no changes to the planning requirements, the guidance on the web is still valid.  However an updated version containing minor changes to the reporting form will be posted in the coming months.

[1] [310 CMR 50.42(5) and 310 CMR 50.92(6), respectively]

Paul Walsh
MassDEP, BWP, Business Reporting and Fiscal Operations
One Winter Street
Boston Ma 02108
Office 617-556-1011

 

 

TUR Planning – Notification due January 1st! Reply

If your facility is required to do a Toxics Use Reduction (TUR) Plan under 310 CMR 50.00, you will need to send out notification to your employees that this is a TUR planning year and solicit ideas for reducing the use and byproduct of the reportable chemicals your facility triggers for.  This notification must be made by January 1, 2012!

There are three options for TUR Plan format: A conventional TUR Plan, a Resource Conservation Plan, or an Environmental Management System (EMS).

The notification for a conventional TUR Plan must:

  • Include requirements of the plan
  • Identify the toxics and production units for which a plan will be submitted
  • Provide the criteria for plan
  • Solicit comments or suggestions from all employees on toxics use reduction options

The notification for a Resource Conservation Plan must:

  • Include requirements of the plan
  • Identify the natural asset being considered as the focus of the plan
  • Solicit comments or suggestions from all employees on resource conservation options for that asset

There is no notification requirement for EMSs, but there are requirements for:

  • A written environmental policy that expresses how the facility manages and makes a commitment to:

(a) Compliance with environmental legal requirements

(b) Pollution prevention through source reduction and toxics use reduction

(c) Continual improvement of the EMS and environmental performance

  • Procedures for communicating environmental and EMS information throughout the facility, including EMS awareness programs for all employees

Remember, you will need to complete and have evidence – a memo, an email, a posting – of the notification sent to employees by the January 1 deadline.

For more information, please contact Linda Swift at 508-970-0033 ext. 119 or lswift@capaccio.com.

EPCRA 313 and TURA Reporting/Planning Reply

It is never too early to start thinking about collecting your chemical use and emissions data for calendar year 2011. Nor is it too early to begin evaluating your reporting thresholds for Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) Section 313 Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (Form R) and Massachusetts Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) Toxics Use (TUR Form S) Reporting.  Reports are due July 1, 2012.

Hydrogen sulfide is added to TRI requirements for 2012

In the October 17 edition of the Federal Register, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that they dropped their stay on hydrogen sulfide gas because they had enough scientific evidence to change its status to reportable. Companies will have to report if they manufacture, process, or use hydrogen sulfide in excess of reporting thresholds. This decision will likely impact utilities, petroleum refineries, and metal and coal mining companies. The change will take effect in the 2012 Form R reporting cycle with reports due July 1, 2013.

Please note: In a recent conversation with Dwight Peavey, TRI Coordinator for EPA New England, Dwight stressed that having back-up for threshold determinations and emission calculations will be very important in the upcoming reporting year. EPA is using other databases (e.g., Tier 2 and Risk Management Programs) to connect the dots and find companies that should be reporting.

 Newly Added TURA Chemicals

The TURA Administrative Council voted this year to separate hexavalent chromium compounds  from the general chromium compounds category, and make hexavalent chromium compounds a Higher Hazard Substance (HHS).   They also voted to designate formaldehyde as a HHS.  There is a formal public comment period on these proposed regulation changes that began November 11 and ends December 1, 2011.  Go to:  http://www.mass.gov/eea/waste-mgnt-recycling/toxics/toxic-use-reduction/hearing-amendments-to-the-toxic-substances-list.html  to find information on where you can obtain a copy of the proposed regulation changes and to submit comments, if you wish to do so.

If the proposed regulations are finalized before the end of calendar year 2011, then 2012 would be the first year that hexavalent chromium compounds and formaldehyde would have a 1000 pound (lb) reporting threshold.  Other chromium compounds (most often trivalent) would still have a 25,000 lb threshold for manufactured and processed, or 10,000 lb for otherwise used.  The 2012 reports would need to be filed with the MassDEP by July 1, 2013.

TUR Planning

2012 is a TUR planning year. Don’t forget to post your Employee Notification that reminds employees at your company that you will be going through the TUR planning process and solicit their input on ways to reduce toxics use and byproduct.

Plan Summaries/Progress Reports and Plan Certification need to be completed and submitted by July 1, 2012.  You will need to have a traditional TUR Plan, a TUR Environmental Management System, or a Resource Conservation Plan in place by July 1st.   Reminder: plans must be certified by a MassDEP Certified Toxics Use Reduction Planner.

 If you need any help with developing a methodology that will past EPA and MassDEP muster, contact Linda Swift at 508.970.0033 ext. 119 or lswift@capaccio.com or Lucy Servidio at 508.970.0033 ext. 114 or lservidio@capaccio.com.