U.S. Virgin Islands Tier II Reporting
Tier Ⅱ reporting in the U.S. Virgin Islands 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 U.S. Virgin Islands’s Tier II Reporting Requirements
Who Needs to Report?
Any facility in the U.S. Virgin Islands 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 the U.S. Virgin Islands 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 the U.S. Virgin Islands 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 the U.S. Virgin Islands can be found here.
Types of Facilities Subject to Tier II Reporting
Here are some examples of facilities and chemicals that would require Tier II reporting in the U.S. Virgin Islands:
- Fuel terminals – Facilities storing gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, propane, etc. need to report inventory quantities.
- Chemical distributors – Businesses distributing chlorine for pools, ammonia for refrigeration, acids, solvents, etc. must submit reports.
- Gas stations – Though exempt under EPCRA, gas stations storing over 10,000 lbs of fuel must file reports under USVI law.
- Hospitals – Chemicals like ethylene oxide, formaldehyde, lab reagents, and radioactive materials require reporting.
- Wastewater plants – Treatment chemicals like chlorine, sodium hypochlorite, and ferric chloride used onsite necessitate filing reports.
- Landfills/scrap yards – Quantities of fuels, solvents, and metals contained in discarded materials require reporting.
- Food processors – Ammonia used for refrigeration, cleaning agents, and lubricants require inventory reporting.
- Furniture refinishers – Chemicals like paints, varnishes, solvents, and lacquer thinners must be reported if over thresholds.
- Pest control companies – Insecticides, rodenticides, and fumigants stored in their facilities need proper reporting.
- Auto shops – Oils, fuels, battery acids, paints, and solvents need to be reported if storage exceeds 10,000 lbs.
- Hardware stores – Fertilizers, paints, pesticides, and pool chemicals may trigger reporting.
Facilities in these industries would likely need to report common chemicals stored over Tier II thresholds like acids, flammable liquids, fuels, chlorine, and ammonia.
The U.S. Virgin Islands’s Electronic Tier II Reporting System (Tier2Submit Software)
Overview of the Tier2Submit Software
Tier2Submit Software used in the U.S. Virgin Islands allows facilities to enter and manage chemical inventory information online. Users must create an account and facility profiles before submitting reports. The bilingual interface is available in English and Spanish.
How to Submit a Tier II Report in the U.S. Virgin Islands
Here are the key steps to submit a Tier II report in the U.S. Virgin Islands using the Tier2Submit software:
- Build your facility and chemical inventory
- Add your facility details like name, address, contacts, etc.
- Input your chemical inventories including CAS numbers, storage locations, and amounts.
- Validate and finalize the report
- Perform quality checks and validate that the report is accurate
- The software will also check for any potential errors
- Certify that the information is true, accurate, and complete.
- Export your Tier II report(s) in Tier2Submit as a .t2s file.
- Send any prepared files and forms to [email protected]. The Virgin Islands DPNR will submit the report to the appropriate fire department and LEPC.
- Retain a copy of the report and certification page (if applicable).
- The U.S. Virgin Islands accepts paper copies although electronic submissions are preferred.
- The email ([email protected]) sends emails directly to the DPNR and to the current Fire Chief. When submitting electronic reports, you do not need to submit a separate email to the Fire Chief.
- For paper submittals, copies must be sent to both the DPNR and the VI Fire Services. Addresses are provided below:
- VI Department of Planning and Natural Resources (DPNR)
4611 Tutu Park Mall, Ste. 300
St. Thomas, VI 00802
Deadlines and Timelines for Tier II Reporting
Annual Reporting Deadline
In the U.S. Virgin Islands, facilities must submit their Tier II reports on hazardous chemicals present during the previous calendar year by March 1 annually.
Additional Reporting Requirements
In the U.S. Virgin Islands, 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
While you can submit paper copies of Tier II reports the U.S. Virgin Islands prefers electronic copies via Tier2Submit Software.
Keep Copies of All Submitted Reports
Download copies of the completed Tier II form for your documentation.
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 consult 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 typically leads to the highest fines.
- Even small errors associated with one chemical can incur sizable penalties.
- Follow EPCRA closely to avoid violations and protect your business finances.
Penalties for Non-Compliance with Tier II Reporting in U.S. Virgin Islands
Potential Fines and Legal Consequences
Here are some potential fines and legal consequences for not accurately submitting a Tier II report in the U.S. Virgin Islands:
- Civil penalties of up to $25,000 per violation per day can be assessed under the USVI Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act.
- Criminal fines of up to $50,000 or imprisonment of up to 5 years as per USVI law for willful violations of reporting requirements.
- Regulatory enforcement actions can be taken by ordering facilities to submit reports, conduct training, or take other corrective measures.
- The USVI may issue stop-use or stop-work orders prohibiting a facility from handling hazardous chemicals until compliance is achieved.
- The inability to adequately develop emergency plans and maps for responding to chemical accidents puts communities at greater risk.
- Potential liability for cleanup costs, property damage, or health impacts from chemical releases if lack of reporting delayed response.
- Negative publicity, loss of public trust, and damage to a company’s reputation within the community.
- Permitting actions may be taken for noncompliance, hindering business operations and expansion plans.
- Legal expenses from defending against both civil and criminal charges can be substantial.
Impact on Community Safety and Emergency Preparedness
There have been a few incidents in recent years that demonstrate the importance of Tier II reporting for community safety in the U.S. Virgin Islands:
- In 2019, a sulfuric acid spill occurred at a refinery on St. Croix. The Tier II report had underreported the quantity, hampering the emergency response.
- In 2016, a release of anhydrous ammonia at a St. Croix cold storage facility sickened residents. The facility had failed to file a Tier II report detailing the ammonia.