The EPA has proposed improvements to its Accidental Release Prevention regulations under Section 112(r) of the Clean Air Act in an effort to improve the safety of chemical handling, public awareness of the dangers of chemicals, and help emergency planners and authorities respond to accidents. The update would apply to all facilities that are required to follow Risk Management Program (RMP) guidelines.
The revisions require operators to consider safer technologies and alternatives through an Inherently Safer Technologies and Designs assessment. Third party audits and root cause analysis are also mandated to find improvements in safety procedures. Additionally, the changes would provide more resources for buildings and communities to create emergency management strategies and improve public awareness of chemical hazards in communities near RMP facilities. The proposed changes are open for public comments via the federal government’s rulemaking portal: www.regulations.gov.