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Jenner & Block: New EPCRA Tier I and Tier II Updates

E. Lynn Grayson   By E. Lynn Grayson, Partner, Jenner & Block

EPA has proposed changes to EPCRA Section 312 Tier I and Tier II Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms required under 40 CFR Part 370. The new rules become effective January 1, 2014.

The reporting requirements under the community right-to-know provisions of EPCRA sections 311 and 312 are on-going obligations. These requirements apply to owners and operators of facilities that are required to prepare or have available a material safety data sheet (MSDS) for a hazardous chemical defined under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard (HCS). If the hazardous chemical is present at or above the reporting thresholds specified in 40 CFR part 370, the facility owner or operator is required to submit a MSDS or a list that contains the hazardous chemical under EPCRA section 311. Under EPCRA section 312, if a hazardous chemical is present at or above the reporting threshold specified in 40 CFR part 370, the facility owner or operator is required to submit an emergency and hazardous chemical inventory form (Tier I or Tier II) to the SERC, LEPC and the local fire department by March 1 annually.

EPA will require facilities to report whether the facility storing the chemicals is manned or unmanned and the maximum number of employees who may be present at the facility at one time on both the Tier I and Tier II forms. Additionally, companies will be required to provide contact information of the facility emergency coordinator, Tier I and Tier II contact information, as well as the email addresses of the owner or operator and emergency contact. Companies will have the option of providing facility phone numbers as well.

For the Tier II forms, EPA will also require facilities to report the latitude and longitude of storage sites as well as the identification numbers assigned under the Toxic Release Inventory and risk management program. The Tier II form also will add separate data fields to report pure chemicals as well as mixtures.

EPA had proposed requiring facilities to provide contact information for parent companies on both the Tier I and Tier II forms as well. It did not finalize that requirement. Instead, facilities will have the option to list that information.

For more information, including the new rule, visit EPA's EPCRA webpage at Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) Requirements.

E. Lynn Grayson is a partner in Jenner & Block's Chicago office and a member of the Firm's Environmental, Energy and Natural Resources Law, Climate and Clean Technology Law, Defense & Aerospace and Environmental Litigation Practices. Ms. Grayson is AV Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell's highest peer recognition for ethical standards and legal ability. Ms. Grayson has been recognized as one of The Best Lawyers in America, an Illinois Super Lawyer and Lawdragon magazine named Ms. Grayson to its "New Stars, New Worlds" list of 500 attorneys who are "carving the path to the new heights of the legal profession." Chambers USA and Leading Lawyers Network have recognized Ms. Grayson as one of the country's leading environmental lawyers as recommended by a peer review process.

Read more at Corporate Environmental Lawyer Blog by Jenner & Block LLP.

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Hazardous Chemicals

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