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.

CMBEN presents Environmental Management Systems on December 14 Reply

The Central Massachusetts Business Environmental Network (CMBEN), in partnership with the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce, present Environmental Management Systems on Wednesday, December 14, 2011 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at St. Gobain Abrasives, Building 301, Administrative Building, One New Bond Street, Worcester, Massachusetts. This meeting is free and open to anyone but space is limited, so please register soon, and no later than December 9.  To register for this event, e-mail Mary Hubbard of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce at mhubbard@worcesterchamber.org or call her at (508) 753-2924. 

There seems to be a resurgence of companies registering to ISO 14001 and/or developing environmental management systems (EMSs). The driver may be a customer requirement or to gain greater market share. Our speakers will present different perspectives on why companies have chosen to develop an EMS as a way to reduce and manage environmental risks. 

  • Linda Swift from Capaccio Environmental Engineering will talk about developing an EMS to meet  ISO 14001 requirements with a focus on Aspects and Impacts
  • Joe Dufresne from St. Gobain will talk about St. Gobain’s EMS, how its maintained and the benefits of having an EMS 
  • Pam Eliason from  TURI will talk about how some companies have chosen to use an EMS as an alternative to traditional TUR Planning  and what it takes to do this  

CMBEN is a network of EHS Managers and other environmental and safety professionals serving industry in Central Massachusetts. They represent some of the region’s largest businesses with years of experience in EHS management. Take advantage of this know-how by attending this, and other informative sessions.

If you would like to join CMBEN, contact Mary Hubbard at the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce at (508) 753-2924 or mhubbard@worcesterchamber.org or any of the CMBEN chairpersons: 

Donald Alger                             (508) 854-5560, dalger@allegromicro.com

Brian Postale                            (508) 839-8191, bpostale@wyman.com

Marina Gayl                               (617) 626-1077, marina.gayl@state.ma.us

Lucille Servidio                          (508) 970-0033,  lservidio@capaccio.com

Lindsay Chhon                          (508) 688-3097, lindsay.chhon@abbott.com

EPA Extends SPCC Rule’s Compliance Date for Certain Facilities Reply

On October 7, 2010, EPA maintained the November 10, 2010, compliance date for drilling, production or workover facilities that are offshore or that have an offshore component, and for onshore facilities required to have and submit Facility Response Plans (FRPs). However, EPA extended the compliance date an additional year for all other facilities to amend or develop a SPCC Plan until November 10, 2011.

EPA Area Source Boiler MACT Notification Due 1

Facilities that meet the applicability criteria of the EPA’s National Emission Standards for Industrial/Commercial/Institutional Boilers at Area Sources (40 CFR 63, Subpart JJJJJJ) are required to submit an initial notification with the EPA no later than September 17, 2011.

Does it apply to your Boilers?

The rule applies to all boilers located at area sources, with the exception of gas fired boilers and hot water heaters. An area source is any facility that emits less than 10 tons per year of any single hazardous air pollutant (HAP), and less than 25 tons per year of any combination of HAPS.

The EPA offers the following definitions for exempt sources:

Gas-fired boiler includes any boiler that burns gaseous fuels not combined with any solid fuels, burns liquid fuel only during periods of gas curtailment, gas supply emergencies, or periodic testing on liquid fuel. Periodic testing of liquid fuel shall not exceed a combined total of 48 hours during any calendar year.

Liquid fuel means, but not limited to, petroleum, distillate oil, residual oil, any form of liquid fuel derived from petroleum, used oil, liquid biofuels, and biodiesel.

Hot water heater means a closed vessel with a capacity of no more than 120 U.S. gallons in which water is heated by combustion of gaseous or liquid fuel and is withdrawn for use external to the vessel at pressures not exceeding 160 pounds per square inch gauge (psig, including the apparatus by which the heat is generated and all controls and devices necessary to prevent water temperatures from exceeding 210 degrees Fahrenheit (99 degrees Celsius).

What are your requirements?

In addition to the requirement to file an initial notification, the regulation also contains requirements related to emission limits, work practice standards, operating limits (for sources with emission limits), and reporting. The exact requirements for any particular boiler are based on whether the boiler is existing or new, what the heat input rating is for the boiler, and what type of fuel is combusted (biomass, oil, or coal). A boiler is an existing unit if it commenced construction on or before June 4, 2010. A boiler is a new unit if it commenced construction after June 4, 2010.

Below is a summary of some of the key compliance dates:

• By September 17, 2011 – File an initial notification of applicability with the EPA.

• By September 17, 2011 – New boilers must file the notification, or within 120 days of startup, whichever is later. An example notification form can be found on the EPA website at the following address:

http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/boiler/area_initial_notification.doc

• By March 21, 2012 – All boilers (except coal fired units greater than 10 MMBtu/hr) must have their first biennial tune-up conducted. Subsequent tune-ups must be completed no later than 25 months after the previous tune-up.

• By July 19, 2012 – All existing boilers (except coal fired units greater than 10 MMBtu/hr – See regulation for applicable dates) must file a notice of compliance status with EPA.

• By March 21, 2014 – All existing boilers with heat input ratings of 10 MMBtu/hr or greater must perform a one-time energy assessment. New boilers are not required to conduct energy assessments.

The above is just a summary of the major requirements. For a complete listing of all requirements that might apply to your boiler, you should consult 40 CFR 63, Subpart JJJJJJ. A copy of the final regulation as published on March 21, 2011 can be found on the EPA website at the following address:

http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/boiler/fr21mr11a.pdf

Should you have questions on whether the rule applies to your boilers, or if you are not sure what requirements may apply, please contact Lynn Sheridan at 508.970.0033 ext. 122 or lsheridan@capaccio.com.