By: Genevieve Essig
EPA has released the 2013 Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) preliminary dataset, which contains toxic chemical release and pollution prevention data reported by facilities for the 2013 calendar year. The currently available dataset includes reporting forms processed as of July 9, 2014 (the annual reporting deadline is July 1); EPA plans to update the dataset throughout the summer and release the complete dataset in October. The TRI National Analysis Report, which is developed on an annual basis to provide the public information on “how toxic chemicals were managed, where toxic chemicals were released, and how [that year’s] TRI data compare to data from previous years,” will be issued in January 2015 based on this data. 2013 was the first year that facilities were required to submit their TRI reporting forms electronically using the TRI-MEweb reporting application.
The dataset is accessible through EPA’s Envirofacts system, which includes search functions that allow a user to utilize the data in a number of ways. It is also available through downloadable TRI data files. EPA suggests that one may use the preliminary dataset to conduct such tasks as the following:
- Determine if a particular facility has reported to TRI.
- Determine what chemicals a particular facility is using and releasing into the environment, or otherwise managing as waste.
- Find out if a particular facility initiated any pollution prevention activities in the most recent calendar year.
- Begin conducting research into toxic chemical releases across the United States or in a specific geographical area.
Various other online TRI tools will be updated beginning in September.