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Electronic Reporting Forms and Managing Large Data: Important Notes

The electronic reporting forms were designed so that you can paste values from other Excel spreadsheets into the forms, specifically, transaction data. However there are some important things to remember if you decide to maintain your data in another spreadsheet and then paste them into the electronic reporting forms.

Drop Down Lists

You must be sure that data in all of the cells that have a drop-down list in the electronic forms match the data lists in these drop-down cells exactly. The form will allow you to enter incorrectly formatted data; however, if you do not format the data properly, EPA’s tracking system will not accept your submission.

Example: Company A is an Exporter of Class II ODS substance. They have a large number of transactions and are eager to use the electronic reporting system so they can cut and paste their transaction data from their internal data system into section 2 of the new Class II Exporter electronic form. Among the countries receiving ODS are the United Kingdom and France. Company A cut and paste their data into the electronic reporting form, referring to the United Kingdom as the “UK” and France as “France.” Their export data totaled correctly in section 3 of the Exporter report with the country references of UK and France carrying forward. Company A saved and submitted the report to EPA, and was surprised when they found out from EPA that there was a problem with their report. What happened?

Answer: When cutting and pasting data into an electronic form, submitters must ensure that the data they are cutting and pasting match the electronic form references. For instance, in the example above, Company A referred to France correctly; however, they referred to the United Kingdom incorrectly. If you look at the drop down list of country selection options, the United Kingdom is referred to as “United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,” not “UK.” (This is the terminology referenced in the Montreal Protocol.) The form accepted the UK reference but when EPA attempted to upload the data into the Ozone Depleting Substance Tracking System, the reference to UK was not recognized, and the data could not be processed.

Remember! Any data cut and paste into the electronic forms must use the exact same references in any drop down list.

Formatting

For the most part, the e-Reporting forms are pre-formatted for you so that when entering data, such as dates, the form will automatically format your data appropriately. However, there are some instances (although not many) where you should enter data according to certain formatting requirements. These requirements are detailed in the red column “flags” (which can be seen by scrolling over each cell) of each column header. Therefore, it is important to always read all instructions given in the flags for each column and to ensure your entries are formatted in the same way as those in the sample row.

Example: Company B is reporting their import activities in Section 2 of the Class II importer electronic reporting form. They enter their IRS importer number with a hyphen (12-3456789) into column B of Section 2 for each of their transactions. The form accepts these values and allows Company B to complete the form and produce CSV files. After submitting their CSV files to EPA, Company B is surprised to learn that EPA was unable to process their data. What happened?

Answer: Although the importer number is often provided with a hyphen, EPA’s tracking system requires the importer number be formatted as a number of up to 15 digits with no hyphens or spaces (e.g., 123456789). When EPA uploads your data into its tracking system, if the format of this number is not correct, the system will reject the submission and it will have to be corrected before it can be entered.

Remember! All data entry must be formatted according to any specific direction as provided in the flags for each column and illustrated by the sample row.

Automated Cells

When you are copying and pasting, you should not copy and paste into automated cells. Once your data is entered, the form will generate lists of chemical names and calculate the values in these cells for you automatically.

For example, within the Exporter Class II form, you must enter all data manually into section 2 (this is transaction data). Once this data is entered, if you press the “Proceed to Section 3” button, the form will automatically calculate all of section 3 for you (i.e., Class II Substance names and Countries Receiving Export names will be auto-populated and Quantity of Class II Substances Exported will be auto-calculated).

Please click here for a table detailing all automations within each of the seven reporting forms. (2 pp., 153 kb)

Blank Cells

Certain fields are applicable to all reporting companies and must be completed. If a required cell is left blank, when EPA uploads your data into its tracking system, the entire submission will be rejected and you will be asked to correct the form and re-submit it.

Certain fields are not applicable because of the nature of your data. For example, if you imported a substance that was not a blend, the fields asking for information about an imported blend are not applicable for your particular transaction.

In each of the forms, in the row beneath the column title,* instructions appear indicating whether or not the cell can be left blank. Each instruction will either indicate that the cell must never be left blank or that the cell must not be left blank if certain conditions are met (e.g., Name of HCFC in Blend must not be blank if the commodity is a blend).

If you are unsure about leaving a cell blank, please refer to the instructions for the column in question.

*Please note that due to Section 1’s unique structure, for all forms, the directions for cells in Section 1 can be found in cell comments. These are indicated by small red triangles in the upper right hand corner of the cell. They can be read by simply scrolling your mouse over the cell.

Follow these links for detailed information on Drop Down Lists and Formatting in each form:

You will need Adobe Reader to view some of the files on this page. See EPA's PDF page to learn more.

Class II Producer  (Microsoft Excel, 2.8 MB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column A (Section 2)Chemical Name

Column A (Section 3)Chemical Name*

*Please note – the form will automatically generate a list of chemical names in Column A for you. However, if you do enter data manually into this column, it must match the drop-down list.

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Class II Exporter  (Microsoft Excel, 254 KB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column E (Section 2)Recipient Company Country

Column G (Section 2)Article 5 Country?

Column L (Section 2)Is the Substance a Blend?

Column M (Section 2)HCFC Being Exported if Not a Blend

Columns Q, S, U (Section 2)Name of HCFC in Blend

Column Y (Section 2)Transaction Type

Column Z (Section 2)– Intended Use

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Class II Importer  (Microsoft Excel, 8.3 MB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column B (Section 2)Source Country

Column E (Section 2)Is the Substance a Blend?

Column F (Section 2)HCFC Being Exported if Not a Blend

Columns J, L, N (Section 2)Name of HCFC in Blend

Column S (Section 2)Transaction Type

Column U (Section 2)Intended Use if New

Column V (Section 2) – Intended Use if Used

Column W (Section 2)Intended Use if Heels

Column A (Section 3)Chemical Name*

*Please note – the form will automatically generate a list of chemical names in Column A for you. However, if you do enter data manually into this column, it must match the drop-down list.

Formatting:

Row 11 (Section 1)Importer Number (9 digit number, with no dashes)

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Class II Request for Additional Consumption Allowances (Microsoft Excel, 4.6MB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column E (Section 2) – Recipient Company Country

Column K (Section 2) – HCFC Chemical Exported

Column O (Section 2) – Company that Produced HCFC (Expending Consumption and Production Allowances)

Column P (Section 2) – Company that Imported HCFC (Expending Consumption Allowances)

Column Q (Section 2) – Country HCFC was Imported From

Column A (Section 3)Chemical Name*

*Please note – the form will automatically generate a list of chemical names in Column A for you. However, if you do enter data manually into this column, it must match the drop-down list.

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Class I Producer (Microsoft Excel, 2.3 MB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column A (Section 2)Chemical Name

Class I Exporter (Microsoft Excel, 276 KB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column E (Section 2) – Recipient Company Country

Column K (Section 2) – Class I Substance Exported

Column O (Section 2) – Transaction Type

Column P (Section 2) – Intended Use If New or Used…

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Class I Importer (Microsoft Excel, 238 KB)

Drop Down Lists:

Column B (Section 2)Source Country

Column E (Section 2)Class I Substance Imported

Column J (Section 2) Transaction Type

Column K (Section 2) Intended Use if New

Column L (Section 2)Intended Use if Used

Column N (Section 2)Intended Use if Heels

Formatting:

Column D (Section 2) Importer Number (9 digit number, with no dashes)

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