The Delaware EPCRA Reporting Program is situated within the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC)'s Emergency Prevention and Response Branch. The program is responsible for the collection, management, and dissemination of information reported under the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) (42 U.S.Code Chapter 16), as well as Delaware law (16 Del Code 63) which builds upon the federal requirements.
EPCRA includes a number of reporting requirements for businesses, including information on the storage, use, and release of hazardous and toxic chemicals. Annual Hazardous Chemical Inventory and related information is collected and maintained in a secure web-based system for access by emergency planning and response organizations statewide. Toxics Release Inventory data is also computerized and annual reports are prepared and released to the public. The EPCRA Reporting Program provides compliance guidance for the various reporting requirements to businesses, and also provides information to the public.
In 1986, the federal Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) was signed into law. Title III of SARA was a free standing statute, known as the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). EPCRA serves two main purposes. First, it mandated the establishment of networks for chemical emergency planning at the local level, and promoted public participation in managing chemical risks in the community. Second, it established a series of reporting requirements for businesses, to provide information to emergency planners, responders, and the public. In 1991, Delaware established its own EPCRA law (16 Del. Code 63), which built upon the federal requirements. Lower thresholds were established for some reporting requirements, and reporting fees were established for annual Hazardous Chemical Inventory (Tier II) reporting.
SERCs and LEPCs
Under EPCRA, each state is required to establish a State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) to be comprised of representatives from various state and local government organizations and industry. The SERC enhances emergency response and preparedness capabilities through better coordination and planning. The SERC also establishes local emergency planning districts and appoints Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs) for each district. Four LEPCs have been established in Delaware: New Castle; Kent County; Sussex County; and City of Wilmington. The LEPCs prepare emergency response plans and meet regularly to encourage public involvement at the local planning level. The Hazardous Chemical Inventory (Tier II) reporting fees collected from businesses are primarily used to support the operation of Delaware’s LEPCs.
Information concerning chemicals used, stored, and/or released from specific facilities can be obtained by submitting a Freedom of Information Act request.
To contact the EPCRA Reporting Program for more information, please click here.