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EPA Annual Toxics Report Details Chemicals Released from Facilities in the USVI

Release Date: 03/22/2007
Contact Information: Rich Cahill (212) 637-3666, cahill.richard@epa.gov

(New York, N.Y.) The latest Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) data continues to show a downward trend for chemical releases into the air and water by facilities in the U.S. Virgin Islands according to the annual report released today in record time by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Between 2004 and 2005, total releases decreased 38.5% from 1.3 million pounds in 2004 to 0.8 million pounds in 2005.

“The TRI data reveals an encouraging trend, one that bodes well for a cleaner environment,” said Alan J. Steinberg, EPA Regional Administrator. “This report is a valuable tool for communities, local government and business leaders alike because it provides valuable information about chemicals being released into our environment and shows businesses where to focus efforts on making process improvements.”

The drop in total releases is largely due to the reduction of air emissions of carbonyl sulfide in that period from 323,320 pounds to 52,242 pounds reported by Hovensa. Carbonyl sulfide is an unwanted byproduct of the oil refining process. In addition to adding equipment to reduce emissions, Hovensa switched to continuous monitoring for carbonyl sulfide, a more accurate testing method than used by the facility previously.

The TRI is the most comprehensive source of information about chemicals released into the environment. On a national level, over 23,000 facilities reported on approximately 650 chemicals for calendar year 2005. Thanks to improvements in EPA’s system, the vast majority of facilities now report data electronically and detailed information about specific facilities is more readily accessible to the public.

The TRI tracks the chemicals released by facilities specified by the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act of 1986 and its amendments. The Pollution Prevention Act (PPA) of 1990 also mandates that TRI data include information on toxic chemicals treated on-site, recycled, and burned for energy recovery.

The TRI data and background information are available to the public at: http://www.epa.gov/tri. Communities can also quickly and easily identify local facilities and chemical releases by using the TRI explorer mapping tool, available at: http://www.epa.gov/triexplorer.

(07-030)