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Adoption of Final Rule: 6 NYCRR Part 597

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Hazardous Substances Identification, Release Prohibition, and Release Reporting

Effective March 3, 2017

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) filed a Notice of Adoption for amendments to 6 NYCRR Part 597, Hazardous Substances Identification, Release Prohibition, and Release Reporting. The amendments finalized the:

(1) addition of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA-acid, Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) No. 335-67-1), ammonium perfluorooctanoate (PFOA-salt, CAS No. 3825-26-1), perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS-acid, CAS No. 1763-23-1), and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS-salt, CAS No. 2795-39-3) to the list of hazardous substances at 6 NYCRR Section 597.3 (Section 597.3);

(2) allowance for continued use of firefighting foam that may contain PFOA-acid, PFOA-salt, PFOS-acid or PFOS-salt to fight fires (but not for training or any other purposes) on or before April 25, 2017 even if such use may result in the release of a reportable quantity (RQ), which is otherwise prohibited; and

(3) correction to the list of hazardous substances by providing units for RQs.

The Express Terms of the Final Rule are identical to the Express Terms of the Proposed Rule which were published on April 25, 2016. DEC updated the Regulatory Impact Statement, Regulatory Flexibility Analysis for Small Businesses and Local Governments, Rural Area Flexibility Analysis, and Job Impact Statement associated with this rule after careful consideration of formal and informal public comments received by DEC prior to adoption of the Final Rule. The updated documents are provided below.

Regulated entities should be aware of the following deadlines associated with compliance with the Final Rule.

• April 25, 2016 - Registration Requirement
A facility that stores one or more hazardous substances, which is subject to the Chemical Bulk Storage (CBS) registration requirements in 6 NYCRR Part 596, is required to submit its registration application to DEC and pay the commensurate fee when it becomes subject to regulation. PFOA-acid, PFOA-salt, PFOS-acid, and PFOS-salt became hazardous substances subject to these registration requirements on April 25, 2016.

• April 25, 2017 - Firefighting Foam Compliance
The release prohibition includes an exception with a new provision at paragraph 597.4(a)(3) which allows entities storing firefighting foam to use the foam to fight fires, but not for training or other purposes, on or before April 25, 2017 while they determine if using the foam would cause a release of one pound or more of PFOA-acid, PFOA-salt, PFOS-acid, or PFOS-salt. This exception is necessary in order to ensure the availability of materials to control fires effectively to benefit public safety.

Foam that is prohibited for use after April 25, 2017 should be safely disposed in accordance with federal, state, and local requirements. DEC's recommended method of disposal is described in the fact sheet on "Storage and Use of Firefighting Foams" (link provided below). Replacement foam may not contain a hazardous substance at a concentration that would result in the release of the reportable quantity (one pound) or more when used as a firefighting foam.

• April 25, 2018 - Existing Facilities: Handling and Storage Requirements
CBS facilities with storage of PFOA-acid, PFOA-salt, PFOS-acid, or PFOS-salt that began prior to April 25, 2016 are required to comply with the handling and storage requirements for these four hazardous substances on or before
April 25, 2018 (See 6 NYCRR 598.1(h)).

Regulatory Documents

Storage and Use of Firefighting Foam Under Amended Part 597

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