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EPA releases latest data on toxic chemicals nationwide. Toxic air releases decreased in Marianas Islands

Release Date: 04/12/2006
Contact Information: Dean Higuchi, 808-541-2711, higuchi.dean@epa.gov

(04/12/06) HONOLULU – Three facilities in CNMI reported a total of 4,200 pounds of toxic chemicals released into the air, land and water in the year 2004, according to new data released today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The data comes from the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory, an annual measure of toxic chemical releases, transfers and waste generated by facilities in the United States. Total releases include toxic chemicals discharged to air, water, underground injection, land (including landfills), and the amount transferred off-site for disposal. Data provided does not mean that facilities with elevated levels are out of compliance with state, local or federal environmental regulations.

There was a 31 percent decrease in air releases due to a 1,748 pound decrease at Mobil Oil Marianas-Saipan Terminal. There was a combined 1, 400 pound decrease in N-hexane, toluene, and benzene in overall reporting. The other two facilities are Mobil Oil Marianas-Saipan Aviation Terminal and Hawaiian Rock Products.

“TRI helps all of us – regulators, emergency responders, businesses and communities – remain aware of the types and amounts of chemicals being used in neighborhoods throughout the country,” said Wayne Nastri, the EPA’s administrator for the Pacific Southwest region. “We are pleased to report a continued downward trend in releases to CNMI’s air.”

Nationally, the amount of toxic chemicals released into the environment decreased by 4 percent from 2003 to 2004, and have declined 45 percent since 1998.

The reporting of data to the Toxics Release Inventory is required under the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, passed in 1986. This program has been credited with arming communities with valuable knowledge and encouraging facilities to reduce their releases of toxic chemicals into the environment through source reduction, or pollution prevention measures.

The following Web sites also provide useful information on TRI: http://www.epa.gov/triexplorer/ and http://www.epa.gov/enviro

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