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News Releases from Region 09

EPA Issues 2014 Toxic Release Inventory data for Nevada

Contact Information: 
Margot Perez-Sullivan (perezsullivan.margot@epa.gov)

SAN FRANCISCO - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released its annual Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) report that showed that the majority of toxic chemicals managed at industrial facilities in the U.S. increased as a result of production, while releases into the environment decreased. The trend showing a decrease in releases to the environment is attributed to an increase in recycling rates.

A total of 134 Nevada facilities reported 496.4 million pounds of production-related toxic chemicals, 157.1 million pounds recycled and 280.6 million pounds released on-site. Nevada's total releases (both on-site and off-site) was 285.3 million pounds a decrease of 23 percent when compared to the 370.7 million pounds reported in 2013.

"The data shows that increased generation does not have to mean increased releases - industry is recycling more and more each year, good for the economy and the environment," said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA's Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. "It is important for communities to know companies are making progress towards achieving greater recycling numbers and reducing waste from being generated."

The top 5 producers in Nevada are:

Newmont Mining Corporation's Copper Canyon Mine in Battle Mountain
Newmont Mining Corporation's Twin Creeks Mine in Golconda
Newmont Mining Corporation's Carlin South Area mine in Elko
Barrick Cortez Inc's Mine in Crescent Valley
Barrick Goldstrike Mines Inc. in Elko

The top 5 recyclers in Nevada are:

Timet, a titanium manufacturer in Henderson
QG Printing, a commercial printer in Fernely
Barrick Goldstrike, a metal mine in Elko
Barrick Cortez, a metal mine in Crescent Valley
VDM Metals, a metal alloys processor in Reno

Nationally in 2014, approximately 84 percent of the 25 billion pounds of toxic chemicals were managed through the use of preferred practices such as recycling, energy recovery, and treatment. Recycling accounted for approximately 48 percent of that figure. Typically, facilities that report to the TRI, considered producers, are larger industrial operators involved in manufacturing, metal mining, electric power generation, chemical manufacturing and hazardous waste treatment.

In the TRI, a "release" generally refers to a chemical that is emitted to the air, water, or placed in some type of land disposal unit. Most of these releases are subject to a variety of federal and state requirements designed to limit human and environmental harm.

TRI data is submitted annually to EPA, states, and tribes by facilities in industry sectors such as manufacturing, metal mining, electric utilities, and commercial hazardous waste. Under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA), by July 1 of each year facilities must report their toxic chemical releases for the prior year. The Pollution Prevention Act of 1990 also requires facilities to submit information on pollution prevention and other waste management activities related to TRI chemicals.

The current TRI toxic chemical list contains 594 individually-listed chemicals and 31 chemical categories. In general chemicals covered by the TRI Program are those that cause one or more of the following: cancer or other chronic human health effects, significant adverse acute human health or environmental effects.

For more Nevada information including multi-year trends, please visit: http://iaspub.epa.gov/triexplorer/tri_factsheet.factsheet_forstate?pstate=NV&pyear=2014&pParent=TRI&pDataSet=TRIQ1

To learn more about how different facilities have managed and reduced their toxic chemical wastes and how they compare to similar facilities, use the TRI Pollution Prevention (P2) tool: http://www3.epa.gov/enviro/facts/tri/p2.html