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Hazardous Chemical Reporting: Community Right-to-Know (40CFR370.1 -- 40CFR370.41)

The following is a summary of the referenced federal rules, as published in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). This information is provided as an aide to help understand the requirements of the federal regulations, as they pertain to specific industrial or manufacturing operations. This information is not provided nor intended to act as a substitute for legal or other professional services. CFR citation numbers for each subpart are indicated, while the full text of the CFR citations can be viewed by clicking HERE and following the directions.

Subpart A -- General Provisions (40CFR370.1 -- 40CFR370.5)

Purpose (40CFR370.1)
To establish reporting requirements that provide the public with important information on the hazardous chemicals in their communities for the purpose of enhancing community awareness of chemical hazards and facilitating development of State and local emergency response plans.

Penalties (40CFR370.5)
Penalties associated with violation of these regulations may result in a fine of not more than $10,000 to $25,000 for each violation.

Subpart B -- Reporting Requirements (40CFR370.20 -- 40CFR370.28)

Applicability (40CFR370.20)
Facilities must provide material safety data sheets (MSDS) and Tier I and Tier II reports to local authorities for on-site hazardous substances.

MSDS Reporting (40CFR370.21)
An MSDS will be submitted for each hazardous chemical located at a facility. The basic requirements for submitting information, alternative reporting, and supplemental reporting guidance are discussed. Facilities may submit a list of chemicals in lieu of an actual MSDS, but must be prepared to submit the MSDS if requested by local emergency planning committees (LEPC). LEPCs may also request additional information about the chemical to facilitate emergency planning activities.

Inventory Reporting (40CFR370.25)
Facilities must also submit reports for each category of hazardous chemical present at the facility during the previous year. Tier I forms provide an estimate of the maximum amount and average daily amount of chemicals present at the facility at any time during the year, the number of days the chemicals are on site, and the general locations of the chemicals. Tier II information is more detailed, including the chemical names, physical states (e.g., pure, mix, solid, liquid, or gas), hazards of the chemical, as well as the information required for the Tier I reports.

Mixtures (40CFR370.28)
Explains how to report mixtures of hazardous chemicals and includes MSDS information, Tier I and Tier II reporting, and is based on the composition of the mixture.

Subpart C -- Public Access and Availability of Information (40CFR370.30 -- 40CFR370.31)

This subpart discusses the disclosure of information to the general public. Members of the community may request from the LEPC any Tier II information for a particular facility in order to gain knowledge of the hazards present. While the public may have access to the types of chemicals present and their quantities, the location of specific chemicals may be withheld.

Subpart D -- Inventory Forms (40CFR370.40 -- 40CFR370.41)

Sample copies of Tier I (40CFR370.40) and Tier II (40CFR370.41) Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms and detailed instructions for preparing each section of the forms are provided.

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