Michigan Tier II Reporting
Tier Ⅱ reporting in Michigan is required for any facility that stores hazardous chemicals that meet or exceed chemical thresholds. Under Section 312 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act of 1986 (EPCRA), submission of a Tier Ⅱ form is required when working with hazardous chemicals. This form, known as the Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms, is used to notify state officials, local officials, and the general public regarding potential hazards.
Understanding Michigan’s Tier II Reporting Requirements
Who Needs to Report?
Any facility in Michigan that has hazardous substances equal to or greater than the established threshold amounts (listed below) must report.
- Any facility that stores 10,000 lbs or more of hazardous chemicals at any one time.
- Any facility that stores 500 lbs (or the threshold planning quantity, whichever is less) or more of extremely hazardous substances.
- Retail fuel stations with underground storage tanks need to report if they store:
- 75,000 gallons or more of gasoline
- 100,000 gallons or more of diesel fuel (all grades combined)
- The reporting thresholds in Michigan apply to the total quantity stored at a facility at any one time.
- Even if thresholds are met, chemicals with reporting exemptions do not need to be included
- Only facilities in Michigan meeting or exceeding the thresholds for at least one chemical must submit a Tier II report. Facilities below the thresholds for all chemicals are exempt.
- More information about reporting requirements in Michigan can be found here.
Types of Facilities Subject to Tier II Reporting
Here are some examples of facilities that would likely need to submit annual Tier II reports in Michigan based on chemicals stored onsite:
- Auto repair shops – For gasoline, motor oil, antifreeze, and brake/transmission fluids exceeding thresholds.
- Manufacturing facilities – For chemicals like acids, solvents, paints, etc. exceeding thresholds.
- Farms – For fertilizers like ammonia, pesticides, and diesel fuel over thresholds.
- Wastewater treatment plants – For chlorine gas/hypochlorite used in disinfection over 100 lbs.
- Swimming pools – For chlorine gas/hypochlorite over 500 lbs.
- Hospitals – For anesthetic gasses, sterilization chemicals like ethylene oxide.
- Dry cleaners – For perchloroethylene used in cleaning processes.
- Chemical distributors – For all hazardous chemicals stored and distributed.
- Food processors – For anhydrous ammonia used in refrigeration over 10,000 lbs.
Facilities in these industries would likely need to report common chemicals stored over Tier II thresholds like acids, flammable liquids, fuels, chlorine, and ammonia.
Michigan’s Electronic Tier II Reporting System (Tier II Manager™)
Overview of Tier II Manager™
The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) requires all regulated facilities to submit Tier II information electronically by using the Tier II Manager™ online filing system.
How to Submit a Tier II Report in Michigan
Here are the steps to submit a Tier II hazardous chemical inventory report in Michigan using the Tier II Manager™ reporting system:
- Review your inventory from the previous year, calculate your inventory in pounds, and review requirements and compare thresholds.
- Log in to your Tier II Manager account and create or select the facility you would like to report for
- Initiate a new report (update/annual/revision).
- Enter, edit, or review the facility report information.
- Submit the report. Be sure to save a copy of the final report for your records.
- No hard copies are accepted by EGLE or the reporting system
- There are no state fees for Tier II reporting in Michigan.
Deadlines and Timelines for Tier II Reporting
Annual Reporting Deadline
In Michigan, the Tier II reporting deadline is due March 1, annually regarding information on hazardous chemicals present at the facility in the previous calendar year.
Additional Reporting Requirements
In Michigan, there may be additional Tier II chemical inventory reporting requirements beyond just the annual report:
- Initial Notification: Facilities must submit a notification within 90 days after they first exceed reporting thresholds for any hazardous chemicals on site. The thresholds for this notification are the same as the Tier II thresholds.
- Emergency Planning Notification: Facilities must submit a notification within 60 days after they bring an Extremely Hazardous Substance on-site in a quantity that exceeds its Threshold Planning Quantity.
Tips for Effective Tier II Reporting
Maintain Accurate Inventory Records
Starting early in collecting compliance data will help with making sure all the data is accurate and ready to go when the March 1st deadline comes around. A good rule of thumb is to have data ready to review the first week of January.
Understand State-Specific Reporting Requirements
In Michigan, the following counties retrieve reports from the Tier II Manager portal: Alpena, Benzie, Calhoun, Chippewa, Crawford, Eaton, Genesee, Grand Traverse, Gratiot, Hillsdale, Ingham, Ionia, Isabella, Kalamazoo, Kent, Macomb, Mecosta, Midland, Monroe, Oakland, Otsego, Ottawa, Presque Isle, Van Buren, Washtenaw, Wayne. Facilities must manually mail reports to their Fire Department and LEPC in other counties.
Keep Copies of All Submitted Reports
Print and save a hard copy of the Tier II report for your records.
Common Mistakes in Tier II Reporting and How to Avoid Them
Incorrectly Estimating Quantity of Reportable Substances
It’s important to look at all chemicals across your equipment, departments, and processes. You also need to aggregate extremely hazardous substances that may exist at your facility in different capacities. For example, sulfuric acid could be stored in a drum. Also, if you have lead-acid batteries, you will need to take into account the sulfuric acid housed in the lead-acid batteries (if they are not exempt).
Be sure to check the EPA list of lists to double check if chemicals stored at your facility are an extremely hazardous substance (EHS).
Failing to Keep Up-To-Date with Changes in Regulations
Failure to report can result in Federal, state, and local penalties if an incident occurs and there is no Tier II report on file.
- Submit Tier II reports on time by the March 1 deadline.
- Ensure all hazardous chemicals above reporting thresholds are included.
- Completely omitting chemicals or the full report leads to the highest fines.
- Even small errors like one chemical can still incur sizable penalties.
- Follow EPCRA closely to avoid violations and protect your business finances.
Penalties for Non-Compliance with Tier II Reporting in Michigan
Potential Fines and Legal Consequences
Here are some potential penalties and consequences for facilities that fail to comply with EPCRA Tier II reporting requirements in Michigan:
- Civil Penalties: Michigan can assess fines of up to $25,000 per violation per day for failure to submit or inaccurate reporting. Each required element (chemical names, quantities, locations, etc.) counts as a violation.
- Criminal Penalties: It is a misdemeanor to willfully fail to submit Tier II reports or to knowingly submit false information. This can result in fines of up to $25,000 and/or up to 1 year in jail per violation.
- Increased Risk: Inaccurate reporting compromises emergency planning and response capabilities, putting first responders and the community at greater risk.
- Permit Actions: Failure to comply can impact environmental permits and the regulatory standing of a facility.
- Legal Liability: Facilities may be liable for any injuries or damages that result from inadequate reporting.
- Public Shaming: Non-compliance may be publicized on federal or state right-to-know non-compliance lists.
- Company Audit: The EPA or state regulators may audit a company’s entire EPCRA reporting compliance.
Impact on Community Safety and Emergency Preparedness
Unfortunately, there have been some high-profile incidents in Michigan that highlight the importance of proper Tier II reporting for community safety:
- Detroit Train Derailment (2002): A CSX train derailed, releasing hazardous chemicals. Tier II reports had not been filed, delaying emergency response. A localized evacuation was required.
- Kalamazoo River Oil Spill (2010): An Enbridge pipeline spilled oil into the Kalamazoo River. There was a lack of pipeline reporting and transparency prior to the spill, hampering cleanup efforts.
- Detroit Marathon Gas Leak (2019): A gas leak occurred near the marathon route, requiring quick evacuation. Tier II information was incomplete, causing confusion for first responders.
- Superior Oil Field Tank Explosion (2020): A storage tank explosion injured a worker. It was later found the facility had failed to file Tier II on the contents, putting response teams at greater risk.
- Ann Arbor Chemical Warehouse Fire (2021): A large chemical storage warehouse fire prompted evacuations. The scope was made worse by inaccurate Tier II records on stored chemicals.