Utah Tier II Reporting
Tier II reporting in Utah 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 Utah state officials, local officials, and the general public regarding potential hazards. Facilities must submit the Tier II form electronically through the Utah Department of Environmental Quality’s online portal using the EPA’s Tier2 Submit software.
Understanding Utah’s Tier II Reporting Requirements
Who Needs to Report?
Any facility in Utah 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.
- Any facility that stores 500 lbs or more (or the threshold planning quantity, whichever is less) 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 Utah apply to the maximum 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 Utah 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.
Types of Facilities Subject to Tier II Reporting
Here are some common examples of facilities and chemicals that would require Tier II reporting in Utah:
- Oil refineries and drilling/extraction sites – petroleum products, benzene, hydrogen sulfide
- Warehouses and distribution centers – cleaning products, diesel fuel, batteries
- Hospitals – waste anesthetic gases, sterilants like ethylene oxide, radioactive materials
- Software and tech companies – diesel fuel for backup generators, lead-acid batteries, cleaning chemicals
- Automotive dealers – gasoline, vehicle fluids like motor oil, asbestos in brake linings
- Grocery and retail wholesalers – ammonia refrigeration systems, cleaning chemicals, pesticides
- Cosmetic/pharmaceutical wholesalers – alcohols like isopropanol, acetone, ammonia
Facilities in these industries would likely need to report common chemicals stored over Tier II thresholds like acids, flammable liquids, fuels, chlorine, and ammonia.
Utah’s Electronic Tier II Reporting System (Tier2Submit Software)
Overview of Tier2Submit Software
Utah uses an online portal system for facilities to submit Tier II reports electronically. This is managed by the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Facilities must first use EPA’s Tier2Submit software to create the Tier II report file in the proper format. The portal checks for errors in location coordinates, contact info, and chemical data. Users can correct errors before resubmitting. Once the file passes validation, the portal confirms submission is complete. Facilities must still submit reports to local agencies.
How to Submit a Tier II Report in Utah
Here is an overview of the steps to submit a Tier II report in Tier2Submit Software via the Utah DEQ system.
- Create a report. Each year the software is updated and the new version must be downloaded and used by the reporter each year
- 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
- Go to this website and create a new user account on the portal if you don’t already have one. Upon every login, you will have to use a multi-factor authentication code that is sent to your email address.
- If this is your first time setting up the account, have your account activated by emailing the EPCRA Coordinator at [email protected]. In your email, include the full name and email address used to set up the account. Your account should be activated within 1 to 2 business days.
- After your account is activated, you will be able to submit reports through the DEQ Tier II portal
- If you are submitting a report for a facility that hasn’t reported in the past, you will need to submit a New Facility Request in order for the facility to be issued a state id. Existing facilities can be associated to your account from the My Facilities page.
- When you are ready to submit your report, go to the Pages->Submit Files page and upload your Tier2Submit file.
- Review and correct any errors shown for location coordinates, contact info, or chemical data.
- Confirm your facility locations on the map provided. Update coordinates if needed.
- Verify your listed emergency contacts and provide any missing contact info.
- Review your facility’s chemical list on the portal. Make corrections in Tier2Submit if needed.
- Confirm submission is complete on the portal. Print or save your receipt.
- Submit the Tier II report separately to your Local Emergency Planning Committee and local fire department found here.
You must submit your Tier II report separately to the appropriate LEPC and local fire department.
Deadlines and Timelines for Tier II Reporting
Annual Reporting Deadline
In Utah, the Tier II reporting deadline is due March 1, annually regarding the information on hazardous chemicals present at the facility in the previous calendar year.
Additional Reporting Requirements
In addition to the main annual Tier II reporting deadline, Utah also has some supplemental Tier II reporting requirements:
- 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
Facilities in Utah must submit their Tier II reports to the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (UDEQ), specifically the Division of Environmental Response and Remediation. In addition to reporting to UDEQ, Utah facilities must also file Tier II reports with the local Fire Department and Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC).
Keep Copies of All Submitted Reports
After successfully submitting your report, you have the option of sending yourself a receipt of submission and printing it off or saving it on your computer for your files.
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. And 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 changes in reportable substances in a timely manner can result in fines and penalties.
- 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 and LEPCs closely to avoid violations and protect your business finances.
Penalties for Non-Compliance with Tier II Reporting in Utah
Potential Fines and Legal Consequences
Here are some potential fines and legal consequences for failure to comply with Tier II reporting requirements in Utah:
- Monetary Penalties: Violators could face monetary fines for various types of violations. The amount of the fine would depend on factors such as the severity of the violation, the impact on public health and the environment, and the violator’s compliance history.
- Corrective Action Orders: The DEQ could issue orders requiring the violator to take specific actions to correct the violation, such as implementing pollution control measures, conducting environmental assessments, or making necessary repairs.
- Criminal Penalties: In cases of intentional or willful violations, criminal penalties could be imposed, including fines and potential imprisonment, as outlined in state environmental statutes.
- Injunctive Relief: The DEQ might seek court orders to prevent ongoing violations and ensure compliance with environmental regulations.
- Permit Revocation or Suspension: Violators who repeatedly fail to comply with permit conditions could have their permits revoked or suspended, effectively halting their operations until compliance is achieved.
- Administrative Orders: The DEQ can issue administrative orders requiring compliance and imposing penalties for violations.
- Cost Recovery: Violators might be required to reimburse the DEQ for costs associated with responding to and addressing violations.
Impact on Community Safety and Emergency Preparedness
Here are a few ways inaccurate Tier II reporting can impact community safety and emergency preparedness in Utah:
- Tier II reports provide information about hazardous chemicals stored and used at facilities. Inaccurate reporting means first responders and emergency planners may not have correct information about potential chemical hazards in their community. This can impact their ability to effectively respond to and prepare for chemical emergencies.
- Inaccurate Tier II reporting makes it difficult for communities to accurately assess risks and vulnerabilities related to hazardous materials. This can lead to inadequate emergency planning and preparedness activities.
- Errors or omissions in Tier II reports mean the public may not be aware of all the hazardous chemicals present in their neighborhoods. This reduces transparency and the ability of citizens to understand potential exposure risks.