Contact: Scott Jensen, (202) 249-6511
Email: scott_jensen@americanchemistry.com  

WASHINGTON (May 4, 2016) - Attorneys General Jeff Landry (LA) and Ken Paxton (TX) recently sent a letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expressing strong concerns with the Agency's proposed changes to the Risk Management Program (RMP).

In response to the letter, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) issued the following statement:

"Attorneys General Landry and Paxton have highlighted important concerns regarding EPA's proposal to make sweeping changes to a major chemical safety program, the Risk Management Program (RMP). According to EPA data, the number of accidents at chemical facilities across the nation has been reduced by 75 percent over the past twenty years. Despite this fact, EPA is pursuing an aggressive timetable for finalizing the proposal without fully evaluating its impact and ability to enhance safety and is not providing the public sufficient time to review and comment on the complex proposal.

"In their letter, Landry and Paxton aptly point out that some aspects of EPA's proposal fall outside of the Agency's statutory authority and could create new problems, which could have a detrimental effect on our collective efforts to safeguard chemical facilities. Specifically, EPA is looking to make changes that could conflict with OSHA's jurisdiction to regulate safety at chemical facilities. ACC shares this concern and has urged the two agencies to work concurrently, not separately, on updating their overlapping chemical safety programs.

"Furthermore, the letter identifies problems with EPA's unworkable third-party auditing procedures and information sharing provisions that would create security issues by allowing sensitive information to potentially fall into the hands of those who wish to do harm.

"We agree with Landry and Paxton's position that EPA must make substantial revisions to its proposal to update RMP so that any changes will truly improve the effectiveness of this highly regarded program."

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