EPA has taken an important step in finalizing a rule that provides tribal governments with more opportunities to fully participate in the TRI Program. This final rule primarily revisits EPA’s July 26, 1990, action (55 FR 30632), which required facilities located in Indian country to report to the appropriate tribal government official (as designated by the tribe) and EPA, instead of to the state and EPA. This 1990 amendment, however, was inadvertently omitted from the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) when it was overwritten by a subsequent rule.
Under this rule, facilities meeting TRI reporting requirements and located in Indian country are required to submit TRI reports to EPA and the appropriate tribe, rather than to the state in which the facility is geographically located. The final rule also clarifies that a tribal chairperson or equivalent elected official has equivalent opportunities to a state governor to petition EPA to request: 1) that individual facilities located within their Indian country be added to TRI, and 2) that a particular chemical(s) be added to or deleted from the TRI chemical list. EPA determines whether to add a facility or add/delete a chemical to the TRI Program.
The Agency’s action is part of its ongoing efforts to increase tribal participation in the TRI Program and improve access to information on toxic chemical releases that affect the local communities in Indian country. Through this final rule, EPA provides tribal governments with the right to directly receive release reporting information from facilities located in Indian country and also explicitly clarifies the rights of tribal leaders to take an active role in TRI through petitions to modify the toxic chemical list or requests to add a facility within their Indian country to TRI.
For more information, please see http://www.epa.gov/tri/lawsandregs/tribalrule/index.html
For the Tribal Rule in PDF format please click the following link: http://www.chemicalright2know.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/TRI-Tribal-Rule.pdf
If you have questions please contact Louise Camalier at (202) 566-0503 or firstname.lastname@example.org.