EPA Chemical Spill Notification

What is an EPA notice?
- Image source EHS.com

If there is a chemical spill or incident at your business, you may need to issue an EPA chemical spill notification.

You must report a pollution incident (by calling EPA on 1300 372 842) if it causes, or threatens, ‘material harm’ to human health or the environment, even if the incident is contained to your site.

Furthermore, you must issue an EPA chemical spill notification, as soon as practicable, after you become aware, or reasonably should have been aware, of the occurrence of the incident. Delaying a notification, without a good explanation, can raise the possibility of additional fines or sanctions.

A notification may not be necessary if a small spill is entirely contained and cleaned up on site, doesn’t threaten the environment and would cost less than $10,000 to clean up. Nevertheless you are responsible for restoring the affected area to the state it was in before the pollution incident occurred.

EPA licence holders must comply with additional license conditions which necessitate an ‘immediate notification’ for any ‘discharge, emission or deposit’ which may harm the environment. Licence holders must also notify EPA in the event of a breakdown or malfunction of risk control systems which could give rise to environmental harm.

During a dynamic incident situation, knowing if, or when, you must notify EPA may not be clear cut. It is better to understand your obligations before such a situation arises. GEDedge is able to help.

Contact GEDedge for more information.

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