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Enforcement in New England

Keeping Track of Toxics Through TRI

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EPA is strongly committed to expanding the amount of environmental information available to citizens and communities. One of the first right-to-know programs at EPA is the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), a program established in 1987. The TRI program requires facilities that manufacture, process, or otherwise use any of 650 chemicals and compounds to report annually how much they released into the air, land and water or transferred offsite. This information is available in an electronically accessible national database.

The program has been hugely successful, spurring dramatic reductions in the use and discharge of toxics all across the country. From 2001 to 2009 New England facilities reduced their environmental release and other disposal both on- and off-site by 42.2%. All six New England states reduced their total on- and off-site disposal and releases.

Totals On and Off-Site Disposal or Other Releases – Reported TRI Chemicals in Total On and Off-Site Disposal or Other Releases for all industries decreased in all of the six New England states. Overall, the six New England states decreased by 2,359,064 pounds in total on and off-site releases for 2008-2009. All values represent pounds per year.

State 2008 On-Site and Off-Site Disposal or Other Releases 2009 On-Site and Off-Site Disposal or Other Releases Direction of Change Difference Percent Change
Connecticut 4,017,682 3,314,913 Decrease -702,769 -17.5%
Maine 10,499,152 9,630,261 Decrease -868,891 -8.3%
Massachusetts 5,765,790 5,375,009 Decrease -390,781 -6.8%
New Hampshire 3,140,190 2,899,274 Decrease -240,916 -7.7%
Rhode Island 468,880 395,231 Decrease -73,649 -15.7%
Vermont 340,088 258,030 Decrease -82,058 -24.1%
Totals 24,231,782 21,872,718 Decrease -2,359,064 -9.7%

In addition, EPA has finalized a rule to add 16 chemicals reasonably anticipated to be human carcinogens to the TRI list of reportable chemicals. This action is part of the Agency's ongoing efforts to examine the scope of TRI chemical coverage and provide communities with more complete information on toxic chemical releases. It is the largest chemical expansion of the program in over a decade. These 16 chemicals will be reportable under TRI for calendar year 2011.

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