[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 10 (Friday, January 14, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 2677-2679]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-493]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

[EPA-HQ-TRI-2010-1022; FRL-9251-2]


Request Facilities To Report Toxics Release Inventory Information 
Electronically or Complete Fill-and-Print Reporting Forms

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: With this document, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
strongly recommends facilities use the Toxics Release Inventory-Made 
Easy Web application (TRI-MEweb) to report and submit Toxics Release 
Information (TRI) data to EPA. TRI-MEweb provides useful features to 
facilitate the submission process and validates data to help ensure 
accuracy. Recognizing that some facilities are still using paper forms 
rather than TRI-MEweb, EPA is providing a new electronically fillable 
version of Form R, Form R Schedule 1, and Form A to make it easier for 
respondents to complete these forms and for EPA to read and process the 
submitted forms. The use of TRI-MEweb (the preferred method) or, 
alternatively, the Fill-and-Print TRI Forms will help ensure data 
accuracy, while also reducing the amount of time it takes for EPA to 
process TRI submissions and make valuable toxic chemical release and 
other waste management data available to the public.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For general information on TRI, 
contact the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Hotline at 
(800) 424-9346 or (703) 412-9810, TDD (800) 553-7672, http://www.epa.gov/epaoswer/hotline/. For specific information on this notice, 
contact David Turk, Toxics Release Inventory Program Division, Mailcode 
2844T, OEI, Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 
Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460; Telephone: (202) 566-
1527; E-mail: Turk.David@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Index

    A. Does this notice apply to me?
    B. How can I get copies of this document and other related 
information?
    C. What is EPA requesting?
    D. Why is EPA making this request?
    E. Does this request address revisions?
    F. Does this request address withdrawals?
    G. What benefits does TRI-MEweb provide?
    H. What benefits do electronically fillable forms provide?
    I. What benefits should these recommendations produce?

A. Does this notice apply to me?

    This notice applies to facilities that submit annual reports under 
section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act 
(EPCRA) and section 6607 of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA). To 
determine whether your facility would be affected by this action, you 
should carefully examine the applicability criteria in part 372, 
subpart B, of Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Potentially 
affected categories and entities may include, but are not limited to:

[[Page 2678]]



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                                        Examples of potentially affected
               Category                             entities
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Industry..............................  Facilities included in the
                                         following NAICS manufacturing
                                         codes (corresponding to SIC
                                         codes 20 through 39): 311*,
                                         312*, 313*, 314*, 315*, 316,
                                         321, 322, 323*, 324, 325*,
                                         326*, 327, 331, 332, 333, 334*,
                                         335*, 336, 337*, 339*, 111998*,
                                         211112*, 212324*, 212325*,
                                         212393*, 212399*, 488390*,
                                         511110, 511120, 511130,
                                         511140*, 511191, 511199,
                                         512220, 512230*, 519130*,
                                         541712*, or 811490*.
                                         *Exceptions and/or limitations
                                         exist for these NAICS codes.
                                        Facilities included in the
                                         following NAICS codes
                                         (corresponding to SIC codes
                                         other than SIC codes 20 through
                                         39):
                                            212111, 212112,
                                            212113 (correspond to SIC
                                            12, Coal Mining (except
                                            1241));
                                            212221, 212222,
                                            212231, 212234, 212299
                                            (correspond to SIC 10, Metal
                                            Mining (except 1011, 1081,
                                            and 1094));
                                            221111, 221112,
                                            221113, 221119, 221121,
                                            221122, 221330 (Limited to
                                            facilities that combust coal
                                            and/or oil for the purpose
                                            of generating power for
                                            distribution in commerce)
                                            (correspond to SIC 4911,
                                            4931, and 4939, Electric
                                            Utilities);
                                            424690, 425110,
                                            425120 (Limited to
                                            facilities previously
                                            classified in SIC 5169,
                                            Chemicals and Allied
                                            Products, Not Elsewhere
                                            Classified);
                                            424710 (corresponds
                                            to SIC 5171, Petroleum Bulk
                                            Terminals and Plants);
                                            562112 (Limited to
                                            facilities primarily engaged
                                            in solvent recovery services
                                            on a contract or fee basis
                                            (previously classified under
                                            SIC 7389, Business Services,
                                            NEC)); and
                                            562211, 562212,
                                            562213, 562219, 562920
                                            (Limited to facilities
                                            regulated under the Resource
                                            Conservation and Recovery
                                            Act, subtitle C, 42 U.S.C.
                                            6921 et seq.) (correspond to
                                            SIC 4953, Refuse Systems).
Federal Government....................  Federal facilities.
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    If you have questions regarding the applicability of this notice to 
a particular entity, consult the individual listed in the preceding FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. This notice may also be of 
interest to those who utilize EPA's TRI information and have an 
interest in the public availability of high-quality, timely TRI data 
and information, including State agencies, local governments, 
communities, environmental groups and other non-governmental 
organizations, as well as members of the general public.

B. How can I get copies of this document and other related information?

    1. Docket. EPA has established a docket for this action under 
Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-TRI-2010-1022; FRL-9251-2]. Publicly available 
docket materials are available either electronically through http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the OEI Docket, EPA/DC, EPA 
West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave., NW., Washington, DC. This 
Docket Facility is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, excluding legal holidays. The EPA Docket Center Public Reading 
Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, 
excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading 
Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OEI Docket is 
(202) 566-1752.
    2. Electronic Access. You may access this Federal Register document 
electronically through the EPA Internet under the Federal Register 
listings at http://www.epa.gov/fedrgstr/.

C. What is EPA requesting?

    EPA strongly recommends that facilities that are required to report 
to the TRI program use TRI-MEweb to prepare and submit their TRI 
reporting forms to the Agency. TRI-MEweb offers facilities useful 
features and data validation tools that facilitate the submission 
process and help ensure the submission of accurate and complete 
information. Facilities have increasingly recognized the benefits of 
using TRI-MEweb, as reflected by the generally increasing percentage of 
facilities that submit TRI reporting forms electronically. Most 
recently, for Reporting Year (RY) 2009, the TRI program received 82,485 
electronic submissions, including revisions, out of a total of 87,158 
submissions. In other words, 94.6% of the RY 2009 submissions were 
electronic. Because such a large portion of TRI reporters already use 
TRI-MEweb, this request largely recognizes and applauds those 
facilities that already use the application and encourages the 
remainder of facilities to use TRI-MEweb as well. More information on 
how to use TRI-MEweb is accessible online at the TRI Web page (http://www.epa.gov/tri).
    However, EPA recognizes that some facilities will elect not to use 
TRI-MEweb for RY 2010. For these facilities, EPA will facilitate the 
reporting and submittal process by providing electronically fillable 
versions (Fill-and-Print TRI Forms) of the Form R (including Schedule 
1) and Form A reporting forms. These Fill-and-Print TRI Forms are 
accessible online (http://www.epa.gov/tri) and will allow facilities to 
complete forms on a computer by tabbing or clicking to each field 
within a form, thereby providing a quick and easy method to complete 
the TRI forms while making the completed forms highly readable.
    To reiterate, EPA strongly recommends and requests that facilities 
use TRI-MEweb to report TRI data; however, if a facility elects not to 
use TRI-MEweb, EPA requests that the facility complete the appropriate 
Fill-and-Print TRI Form, obtain the signature of the facility's 
certifying official, and then mail the form to EPA. Similarly, if a 
facility prints a blank TRI reporting form instead of completing the 
form prior to printing it, EPA requests that the facility complete the 
form by using a typewriter. Facilities that elect to submit paper forms 
must still ultimately have their respective certifying officials sign 
their TRI forms by hand.
    Facilities that submit trade secret information will continue to 
submit two versions of the substantiation form and two versions of Form 
R or Form A --sanitized versions that include the generic chemical name 
and unsanitized versions that include the trade secret chemical name. 
Facilities may not use TRI-MEweb to submit trade secret information. 
However, EPA strongly recommends that facilities that are submitting 
TRI trade secret information use a computer or typewriter to prepare 
the sanitized and unsanitized versions of Form R or Form A and use a 
typewriter to complete the sanitized and unsanitized versions of the 
substantiation form. Please consult the TRI Web site (http://www.epa.gov/tri) and the most recent version of the Toxic Chemical 
Release Inventory Reporting Forms, and Instructions (RFI), which is 
accessible at the TRI Web site, for detailed information concerning the 
submission of trade secret information.

[[Page 2679]]

D. Why is EPA making this request?

    TRI-MEweb provides useful features that make it easier and quicker 
for facilities to provide TRI information to EPA. This online 
application provides validation tools to help ensure facilities provide 
accurate data and enables EPA to process and release the data faster 
than when the data are submitted on hard-copy forms. In light of the 
features and tools TRI-MEweb provides and the prevalence and 
availability of the Internet, EPA is considering issuing a proposed 
rule within the next year that would take comment on requiring 
facilities to utilize electronic reporting for future reporting years 
(i.e., not before RY 2011).
    For facilities that elect not to use TRI-MEweb for RY 2010, EPA is 
providing, as an interim measure, electronically fillable versions of 
Form A, Form R, and Form R Schedule 1. The use of these Fill-and-Print 
TRI Forms should expedite the processing of submittals and prevent some 
inadvertent transcription errors from entering the TRI database. 
Specifically, to incorporate paper submissions into the TRI National 
Database, EPA must first manually transcribe paper submissions into an 
electronic database. Transcription errors can inadvertently occur 
during this process; and, because it can be difficult to read 
handwritten submissions, reports prepared by hand further increase the 
potential for errors to occur. Requesting facilities to complete 
electronically fillable TRI reporting forms prior to printing, 
certifying/signing, and submitting them should facilitate the 
completion and processing of paper submissions and prevent the 
introduction of errors arising from unclear handwriting.

E. Does this request address revisions?

    Yes, this request also addresses the relatively few facilities who 
wish to revise TRI data. EPA strongly encourages facilities to use TRI-
MEweb to revise TRI information associated with a prior reporting year. 
TRI-MEweb allows a facility to access and revise reports submitted for 
the five prior years, regardless of whether the facility has previously 
used TRI-MEweb to submit this information. However, at this point, a 
facility may still file revision requests using hard-copy forms if 
desired by using either (1) a photocopy of the original submission or 
(2) a blank copy of the current year's or applicable year's reporting 
form.
    If a facility wishes to file a revision request by paper, EPA 
recommends that the facility use the appropriate 2010 TRI reporting 
form (Form R, Form R Schedule 1, or Form A), since these forms are now 
available in fill-and-print versions. However, EPA will also accept 
revisions on the applicable year's reporting form. TRI forms for 
reporting years prior to RY 2010 are not available in fill-and-print 
versions; however, if using such forms, EPA strongly encourages 
facilities to use a typewriter to complete the forms, rather than 
completing them by hand.
    Please consult the most recent version of the RFI, which is 
accessible at the TRI Web site (http://www.epa.gov/tri), for detailed 
information concerning revisions.

F. Does this request address withdrawals?

    Yes, the EPA strongly recommends facilities use TRI-MEweb if 
requesting the withdrawal of a previous TRI submission. TRI-MEweb 
allows a facility to access and withdraw reports submitted for the five 
prior years, regardless of whether the facility has previously used 
TRI-MEweb to submit this information. Alternatively, a facility may 
submit a withdrawal request by paper. For detailed instructions 
concerning withdrawals, please consult the most recent version of the 
RFI on the TRI Web site (http://www.epa.gov/tri).

G. What benefits does TRI-MEweb provide?

    EPA requests that facilities use TRI-MEweb because the use of this 
application should provide benefits by expediting the processing of TRI 
reports, maximizing data accuracy, and reducing the amount of time it 
takes EPA to process and make the data available to the public. 
Achieving these benefits will enhance the public's knowledge about 
toxic chemical releases and other waste management information covered 
by the TRI program by helping ensure the timely public availability of 
accurate TRI data and information.
    Appropriately, TRI-MEweb provides useful features and data 
validation tools that make it easy to submit accurate TRI information 
to EPA. Benefits include:
     Validation assistance, which prevents facilities from 
submitting incomplete or invalid information;
     Facility and chemical quick lists feature, which allows 
users to skip sections of the TRI Form R if they do not apply to the 
facility;
     Access to the five prior years of reporting data, which 
enables facilities to check past reporting submissions and revise or 
withdraw previously submitted information;
     The ability to submit valid chemical data files from third 
party software using eXtensible Markup Language (XML), which expedites 
multi-chemical reporting;
     The option to search for publicly owned treatment works 
(POTWs) and sites that report to EPA under the Resource Conservation 
and Recovery Act (RCRA) using location parameter data, which 
facilitates the completion of the off-site transfer location field on 
the TRI Form R and Form R Schedule 1;
     Preloaded parent company data, which assists facilities in 
identifying their parent company and helps ensure a facility is 
accurately matched with its parent company;
     Automatic calculation of Section 8 data on Form R and Form 
R Schedule 1 based on what a facility enters in Sections 5 and 6, which 
saves facilities time and prevents inadvertent mistakes;
     Trend reports, which compare current and prior year data 
to help facilities identify potential errors in reporting; and
     The automatic population of certain data fields based on 
the facility's TRI submissions from the previous reporting year, 
thereby expediting the submittal process and minimizing opportunities 
for inadvertent errors to enter the database.

H. What benefits do electronically fillable forms provide?

    For facilities that decline to use TRI-MEweb, EPA believes the use 
of electronically fillable reporting forms will increase data accuracy 
and shorten the time it takes the Agency to process TRI reports. 
Completing forms using a computer before printing the forms or using a 
typewriter to complete blank forms should reduce the likelihood that 
inadvertent mistakes could occur while transcribing the data into an 
electronic database.

I. What benefits should these recommendations produce?

    If facilities adhere to this request to use TRI-MEweb, or, 
alternatively, Fill-and-Print TRI Forms, the likelihood of inadvertent 
errors occurring during TRI form preparation or processing should be 
reduced. With the use of these tools, the Agency will be able to more 
effectively provide the public with access to the latest TRI data on 
toxic chemical releases and other waste management within communities.

    Dated: January 4, 2011.
Robin Gonzalez,
Acting Director, Office of Information Analysis and Access.
[FR Doc. 2011-493 Filed 1-13-11; 8:45 am]
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