EPA Enforcement Alert – Risk Management Plan Update

June 16, 2009
by BART CASSIDY
MGKF News Flash

Pursuant to the Clean Air Act amendments and EPA regulations, facilities that use, store or produce specified chemicals must prepare and implement Risk Management Plans ("RMPs") to identify potential hazards, perform hazard assessments, evaluate accidental release scenarios and describe release prevention programs and emergency response plans. Following original submittal of their RMPs, affected facilities are required to update and resubmit their RMPs every five years. The original RMP submittals were due for most existing facilities in June 1999; therefore, for most of these facilities, the second five-year update must be submitted on or before June 2009.

EPA Region II issued a compliance warning to facilities regarding this requirement. Specifically, EPA Region II has issued a general compliance warning to regulated facilities, emphasizing the importance of this compliance standard. Region II has stated that it intends to aggressively enforce against noncompliant facilities, and therefore has reminded facilities of this RMP obligation.

As a related point, in March 2009, EPA released an electronic method for submitting RMP information. EPA encourages, but does not require, facilities to submit plan updates using this electronic format, identified as RMP*e Submit.