The US Environmental Protection Agency this week released a large database of information on the use of chemicals in commerce. Known as the Chemical Data Reporting information, the database includes non-confidential information on chemicals manufactured or imported into the US in volumes of 25,000lbs or more at a single site during 2011. It also includes data on industrial processing and consumer and commercial uses of certain chemicals listed on the Toxic Substances Control Act inventory.
The database includes information from 1,515 companies at 4,753 sites on 7,674 chemicals. In addition to reporting on a chemical’s industrial, commercial and consumer product uses the database also indicates whether the substance is used in children’s products. Reporters are also required to identify whether a chemical was recycled, remanufactured, reprocessed, or reused.
The database is simple to use but the search results require careful analysis. At GallonDaily we are still working to find our way around the various parts of the database. Interpretation is made somewhat more complex by the fact that some information is maintained as confidential. EPA requires submitters to provide justification for all information that they wish to designate as Confidential Business Information.
Despite these limitations, the CDR system provides useful information on the utilization and fate of many of the chemicals used by industry in the US. The database and all the supporting information can be accessed in several ways but the best starting point is probably at http://www.epa.gov/oppt/cdr/index.html