Facilities required to report non-trade secret Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data to the EPA must file electronically as of Jan. 21, 2014, according to a final rule published in the Federal Register.
The rule also requires facilities to submit any revisions or withdrawals of previously submitted TRI reporting forms using TRI-MEweb, which stands for Toxics Release Inventory-Made Easy Web, an online reporting application.
Facilities may revise or withdraw TRI forms going back to reporting year 1991, the agency says.
TRI tracks the management of certain toxic chemicals that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. Under the TRI program, US facilities must report annually how much of each chemical is released to the environment and/or managed through recycling, energy recovery and treatment.
The EPA says using TRI-MEweb improves the quality and accuracy of TRI data and allows EPA to get the data to the public faster.
Once the rule becomes effective, facilities submitting non-trade-secret TRI reporting forms for the 2013 TRI reporting year (these forms are due July 1, 2014) or prior reporting years must report electronically. Facilities that submit trade secret TRI information will continue to submit their trade secret reporting forms and substantiation forms in hard copy, as well as any revisions or withdrawals of previously submitted trade secret information.
Researchers at the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst published the Toxic 100 Air Polluters list last week. The list is largely based on data from the TRI. Precision Castparts, DuPont, Biomet, the Bayer Group and Dow Chemicals are the top five corporate air polluters in the US, according to the list.