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printreg, July, 2002
Trade Secret Information & Environmental Reporting

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From: Debra Jacobson(djacobson@istc.illinois.edu)
Date: Fri, 19 Jul 2002 12:32:32

A regulatory brief that may be helpful to many of you.
Deb Jacobson
How does a supplier send a customer notification if the toxic chemical identity or concentration is a trade secret (40 CFR 372.45(e)-(f))?

A facility that manufactures or distributes a toxic chemical (any chemical identified at 40 CFR 372.65) must send out with the first shipment of the year a notification stating the specific toxic chemical identity and weight percentage. If the identity of the toxic chemical is considered a trade secret, the manufacturer or distributor may instead provide a generic chemical name to describe the toxic chemical. If the specific weight percentage of the toxic chemical in the product is considered a trade secret, it is permissible to list an upper concentration level that is at least as high as the actual percentage but is no more than necessary to protect the trade secret.

SARA Title III Section 313 -- How does a facility go about protecting the identity of a toxic chemical as a trade secret when submitting a TRI report (40 CFR 350.5(e)-(h))?

If your facility is subject to Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) reporting and exceeds the threshold for manufacturing, processing, or otherwise using a toxic chemical, you may protect the specific chemical identity if it is considered a trade secret. A toxic chemical, also called a SARA 313 chemical, is any chemical identified in the list at 40 CFR 372.65
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In order to claim the toxic chemical identity as a trade secret, your facility must not have released the identity to any non-governmental organization without a confidentiality agreement nor to any government agency or office without asserting a trade secrecy claim.

If your facility has protected the chemical identity, the toxic chemical may be claimed as trade secret for TRI reporting. In order to file a trade secret TRI report, you must submit two versions of the TRI report: "sanitized" and "unsanitized." The unsanitized copy is the normal TRI report, but the sanitized, or public, copy has a generic chemical description in place of the toxic chemical name and Chemical Abstract Service Registry Number. You also must submit both sanitized and unsanitized copies of the substantiation form at 40 CFR 350.27, which explains to EPA why you need to claim the trade secret. For an updated listing of SARA 313 toxic chemicals, go to http://epa.gov/tri/chemical/index.htm.

Source: "reg of the day" listserv operated by Tammy Silverthorne @ the Environmental Resource Center

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