TRI and Beyond
The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) is a powerful resource that provides the public with information about how TRI chemicals are managed by facilities in the United States. However, there are many other programs at EPA that collect information about chemicals and the environment. The next figure is an overview of some of the laws that EPA implements, and the industrial activities or processes EPA regulates under these laws.
While many programs at EPA focus on one area, TRI covers waste management activities including the release of chemicals to air, water, and land, and waste transfers. As a result, TRI data are especially valuable, as they can be used with many other datasets to provide a more complete picture of national trends in chemical use, chemical management, environmental release and other waste management practices, and environmental performance.
Note: The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) establishes requirements for emergency planning, preparedness, and reporting on hazardous and toxic chemicals involving air releases, water releases, land disposal, waste transfers, and the quantities of chemicals on site, the type and location of storage of those chemicals, and their use.
Throughout EPA, offices use TRI data to support their mission to protect human health and the environment. These uses include technical analysis for regulation, informing program priorities, providing information to stakeholders, and many other applications.
This section of the National Analysis highlights how TRI data contribute to Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) data and risk evaluations, and how TRI has served as a model for other pollutant release and transfer inventories around the world.
As with any dataset, there are several factors to consider when reading about or using the TRI data. Key factors associated with data presented are summarized in the Introduction. For more information see Factors to Consider When Using Toxics Release Inventory Data.
This page was published in February 2020 and uses the 2018 TRI National Analysis dataset made public in TRI Explorer in November 2019.