New TRI data show increased recycling of chemical waste nationwide
the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its 2018 Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) National Analysis. Findings from this publicly available report show an increase in recycling of TRI chemical wastes nationwide and indicate that companies continue to find ways to implement new source reduction activities and reduce the quantities of TRI chemicals they release into the environment.
“By providing the data in the TRI National Analysis, EPA is empowering communities to protect their environment and providing companies with the information they need to work toward a stronger future,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The latest TRI data continue to demonstrate that under President Trump environmental stewardship and economic growth continue to go hand in hand.”
“This year’s TRI data are a great example of how TRI reporting creates a strong incentive for companies to reduce pollution,” said EPA Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention Assistant Administrator Alexandra Dapolito Dunn. “In addition to the TRI being an information resource for the public, TRI data help companies learn from each other’s best practices for reducing emissions and increasing source reduction.”
This year’s National Analysis expands the focus on geographical trends in chemical waste management across the country. New features include profiles exploring the diversity of industrial operations in each EPA region and a closer look at data from the hazardous waste management sector and the aerospace manufacturing sector.
The Analysis showcases industry practices for managing waste and reducing pollution at nearly 22,000 facilities that submitted TRI data for calendar year 2018. EPA encourages facilities to learn from their counterparts’ best practices and adopt additional methods for reducing pollution.
To further highlight these industry best practices, EPA is holding events in EPA regions at facilities that implemented new source reduction activities. These facilities demonstrate how innovative projects have helped to improve their environmental performance.
- Releases of TRI-covered chemicals into the environment from the manufacturing sector were lower than expected based on economic activity.
- Facilities reported initiating 3,120 new activities to prevent or reduce the creation of TRI chemical waste.
- Nationally, the percent of industrial TRI chemical waste that is recycled instead of released continued to increase.
Along with the 2018 TRI National Analysis, EPA is publishing a new tool on the TRI website to help explain the data reported by the metal mining sector. EPA’s new interactive graphic—which was developed with input from stakeholders—explains how metal mines operate, and generally how and where releases of TRI-listed chemicals happen.
Under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA), by July 1 of each year covered facilities must report to EPA the quantities of TRI chemicals they released to the environment during the prior calendar year. EPA, states, and tribes receive TRI data from facilities in industry sectors such as manufacturing, mining, electric utilities, and commercial hazardous waste management. The Pollution Prevention Act also requires facilities to submit information on pollution prevention and other waste management activities of TRI chemicals.