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New National Metrics for CAA 112(r), 112(r)(1), and 112(r)(7) Enforcement Actions Added in ICIS

Background

Thousands of facilities in the U.S. produce, process, store, and/or use extremely hazardous substances that are acutely toxic or can cause accidents such as explosions and fires that can result in serious environmental harm, injuries, and fatalities. To reduce the risks and protect human health and the environment, EPA seeks to accomplish the following goals:

  • Ensure that facilities properly manage the risks that extremely hazardous substances pose;
  • Improve the safety of facilities to protect surrounding communities;
  • Encourage changes in industry behavior;
  • Reduce the impact from potential releases; and,
  • Improve coordination between facilities and emergency responders.

EPA will enforce chemical accident prevention requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA) 112(r)(7), implementing regulations known as the Risk Management Program “RMP,” the CAA 112(r)(1) General Duty Clause, CERCLA 103(a) that establishes the requirement to notify the National Response Center (NRC) of any releases above a reportable quantity and the chemical inventory reporting requirements of the Emergency Planning and Community-Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) to accomplish these goals.

Changes to ICIS

The EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assistance (OECA) has established a National Enforcement Initiative (NEI), the Chemical Accident Risk Reduction (CARR) NEI, to address violations by facilities in five priority sectors with the highest rates of accidents including: ammonia refrigeration; petroleum refining; chemical manufacturing; fertilizer distribution; and gas processing. These enforcement activities will help ensure that facilities comply with federal requirements to design and maintain safe facilities and reduce the risk of accidents for workers and surrounding communities.

OECA has established a new National Metric for “Extremely Hazardous Substances (EHS) properly controlled” to capture environmental benefits related to these enforcement actions. Under this initiative, regions will record verified amounts of EHS (pounds) currently under proper management. The use of the EHS national metric applies to the prevention of future releases category, where there is no current release of pollutants, but a release could occur in the future without the enforcement action.

The new EHS metric has been linked in ICIS, the Agency’s Integrated Compliance Information System, to each of two complying action types (Industry Standard Adopted and Risk Management Plan Implemented) for each of the CAA 112(r), 112(r)(1) and 112(r)(7) sections. This step creates an Active Metric for the complying actions, replacing the prior distinction of No National Metric for each of the six new metric/complying action combinations. Table 1 provides an overview of the type of Combinations of EHS and Complying Actions.

Table 1. Prevention of Future Releases Category and Complying Actions Associated with ICIS New Metric

Complying Action Category

Law Section/Code

Complying

Action Type

Reporting Metric

 

 

Prevention

CAA(R)

CAA(R)(1)

CAA(R)(7)

Risk Management Plan

Implemented

 

 

Extremely Hazardous Substances Properly Controlled (pounds)

 

CAA(R)

CAA(R)(1)

CAA(R)(7)

Industry Standards

Adopted

 

Environmental Benefits can be attributed to the new metric, Extremely hazardous substances properly controlled (pounds) for these enforcement activities. The current methodologies for calculating environmental benefits for 112(r) enforcement cases are reviewed in the Guide to Calculating Environmental Benefits from EPA Enforcement Cases: FY2014 Update, pp. 4-30 – 4-32, which can be found at:  https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-04/documents/ccds.pdf

The NEW Filtering Table workbook (8-11-17, attached) reflects the new EHS reporting metric and its association with the complying actions described above that will support the “Hazardous and Non-Hazardous Waste” reporting metric. It includes two tabs for All Active Metrics and All Inactive Metrics, that list all active and inactive reporting metrics and complying actions, respectively. As an added note, the following updates to the All Active tab of the NEW Filtering Table also have been made: 

  • APPS 1907 prevention cases are now being counted in the “Emission Prevented from CAA Mobile Sources (pounds)” metric, and
  • APPS 1907 direct cases are now being counted in the “Estimated Air Pollutants Reduced, Treated, or Eliminated (pounds)” metric.

Here is the link to the prior (5-31-2016) fact sheet describing changes to complying actions in support of the “Hazardous and Non-Hazardous Waste” reporting metric. For questions, please contact Dan Klaus at (202) 564-7757, David Sprague at (202) 564-4103 or Kay Austin at (202) 564-2695.

 

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