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Release Date: 5/23/2002
Contact Information: Lisa Fasano, U.S. EPA, 415-947-4307

     SAN FRANCISCO   Thirty facilities in Hawaii reported releasing nearly 1.3 million pounds of toxic chemicals into the environment during 2000, according to new data released today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

     The data comes from the EPA's national Toxic Release Inventory, an annual report of chemical releases into the air, water and land.  In Hawaii, surface water discharges were reduced  by 56 percent in 2000, due in large part to decreases in amonia releases from the Chevron Refinery in Kapolei.

     For the first year, the Toxic Release Inventory includes information on the amount of emissions from dioxins and other "persistent bioaccumulative and toxic" or "PBT," chemicals.  PBT chemicals -- which also include mercury and PCBs -- are toxic, persist in the environment and bioaccumulate in food chains.  Hawaii facilities released nearly 6 grams of dioxins into air, and landfills in 2000, ranking 50th nationwide.  

     "The Toxic Release Inventory program is intended to inform people what type of chemicals are being manufactured, stored and released in their communities," said EPA Regional Administrator Wayne Nastri. "This year we're including chemicals such as dioxin and mercury to the list of pollutants that must be reported, giving us a much more accurate picture of chemical releases within the state."

      In Hawaii, nearly 2700 pounds of on- and off-site releases of PBT chemicals were reported.  Of this, almost 2,592 pounds were polycyclic aromatic compounds, 100 pounds were  releases of mercury compounds, and only 5.893 grams were releases of dioxin or dioxin-like compounds.
     The reporting of data to the Toxics Release Inventory is required under the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, passed in 1986.  This program has been credited with informing communities with valuable knowledge and encouraging facilities to reduce their releases of toxic chemicals into the environment through source reduction, or pollution prevention measures.
     Fact sheets and additional information on the 2000 TRI data for Hawaii are available on the web at http: //  Direct access to the TRI data is available on-line at and .

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