EPA Drops Stay on Hydrogen Sulfide, Added to TRI Requirements for 2012
|Date Posted: October 18, 2011|
The EPA’s long-standing policy toward a toxic gas evaporated recently when the agency decided to begin enforcing reporting requirements for hydrogen sulfide. The decision, which was announced in the Oct. 17 edition of the Federal Register, gives regulated companies that deal with the colorless, poisonous gas less than two years to start including it in their annual Toxics Release Inventory reports.
The toxic gas was added in 1993 to the list of chemicals regulated industry must disclose release of under Section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, but an administrative stay put into effect the following year negated those reporting requirements. This free pass on enforcement was instituted in response to questions over the agency’s handling of the science behind its decision.
However, agency officials dropped their hold on the chemical Oct. 17, concluding that the science behind its initial decision to incorporate hydrogen sulfide into the TRI program was sound. The policy change will take effect in the 2012 TRI reporting cycle, with the first reports on it due July 1, 2013.
This massive policy shift is expected to impact a host of industries that manufacture, produce and use hydrogen sulfide, including utilities, petroleum refineries, along with metal and coal mining operations.
For more information, see the November edition of the Community Right-to-Know Manual.