ILTA Submits Comments on EPA Risk Management Program Update
On August 31, 2022, EPA issued a proposed rule to amend the EPA Risk Management Program ("EPA RMP" or "RMP"). EPA sought to update the correlating safety program to the OSHA PSM rule, and the two programs work together to mitigate and reduce risk.
EPA is proposing to amend its RMP to include several critical changes. EPA is proposing changes to address accident prevention program requirements, enhancements to the emergency preparedness requirements, increased public availability of chemical hazard information, and several other changes to specific regulatory definitions or points of clarification. These proposed amendments seek to improve chemical process safety; assist in planning, preparedness, and responding to RMP-reportable accidents; and improve public awareness of chemical hazards at regulated sources.
ILTA convened its working group on the EPA RMP proposed rule and the OSHA PSM program. The working group met several times to discuss ILTA's interests in the EPA RMP proposed rule. The ILTA comments focused on rebutting the need to add new technology (i.e., safer technology) requirements for chemical-related facilities. ILTA's comments also support increased agency flexibility by EPA, including with respect to a 10-year frequency. This 10-year period allowed EPA appropriate agency flexibility in light of the agency's inability to meet proposed strict enforcement timelines, which EPA cannot currently meet.
Further, given ILTA's membership and the significant number of entities that meet the definition of a small business, ILTA urges EPA to consider the impact of the proposed changes on small businesses. Specifically, ILTA and the coalition request that EPA consider the financial burden on small businesses from complying with the proposed rule. For example, ILTA and the industry coalition raised the issue of EPA information requests and how these requests could be overly burdensome on smaller businesses.
ILTA will continue engaging with the industry coalition and EPA as it further develops any proposed and final rule changes for EPA RMP.