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Air Pollutant Report Help

The ECHO Air Pollutant Report presents ten years of EPA programmatic air emissions data for a selected facility. Emissions are presented as facility-level aggregates and organized by pollutant and EPA program. By consolidating emissions data from four different EPA programs into one report, the Air Pollutant Report provides a single source for users looking to understand a facility’s complete air emissions profile.


General Overview

EPA currently tracks air emissions from large stationary sources under four main programs. The Air Pollutant Report is a consolidated report of these four air programs and presents facility-level emissions data for the previous ten years. Chemical releases are not a measure of compliance as the reported releases may be permissible under current laws. A brief description of each program is provided below.

  • National Emissions Inventory (NEI) - The NEI is built from air emissions data stored in the Emissions Inventory System (EIS) database. EIS contains information on stationary and mobile sources that emit criteria air pollutants and their precursors, as well as hazardous air pollutants. The NEI is prepared every three years by the EPA based primarily upon emission estimates and emission model inputs provided by state, local, and tribal air agencies for sources in their jurisdictions, and supplemented by data developed by the EPA. The Air Pollutant Report includes facility-level data from each of the year-specific NEIs (e.g., 2005, 2008, 2011, etc.) and does not include emissions from EIS for the years between the releases. From the most recent NEI, nearly 100,000 facilities are included in the Air Pollutant Report.
     
  • Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP) - The GHGRP collects Greenhouse Gas (GHG) data from large emitting facilities, suppliers of fossil fuels and industrial gases that result in GHG emissions when used, and facilities that inject carbon dioxide underground. Emissions calculation requirements in the GHGRP will depend on individual circumstances, with calculation methods ranging from emission factors and engineering estimation to stack tests and continuous emission monitoring. The Air Pollutant Report includes GHG emissions from facilities reporting to the GHGRP as Direct Emitters. The first year of reporting for the GHGRP was for the 2010 calendar year and there are approximately 8,000 direct emitters in the GHGRP currently reporting GHG emissions to the EPA.
     
  • Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) - TRI tracks the management of over 650 toxic chemicals that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. Facilities that manufacture, process or otherwise use these chemicals in amounts above established levels must submit annual TRI reports on each chemical. More than 20,000 U.S. industrial facilities annually report to the EPA the quantities of TRI chemicals released to the environment or managed through recycling, energy recovery, and treatment. While facilities must report chemical releases over a certain threshold, calculation methods are not prescriptive and there is a wide variation in accuracy of emissions reported under TRI. The Air Pollutant Report includes pollutants reported to TRI as either "stack or point air emissions" or "fugitive or non-point air emissions".
     
  • Clean Air Markets - Clean Air Markets Programs are regulatory programs that improve air quality and public health, by reducing air pollution from large stationary sources such as power plants. These programs lower outdoor concentrations of fine particles, ozone, sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), mercury, and other significant air pollutants. As emission reduction programs implemented by the EPA, Clean Air Markets programs have strict monitoring and reporting requirements. The majority of reported emissions are from hourly sampling performed by Continuous Emission Monitoring Systems (CEMS) and are generally considered the highest quality air emissions data. Emissions are reported to EPA in the Emissions Collection and Monitoring Plan System (ECMPS). The Air Pollutant Report includes emission data from over 1,300 facilities covered under the Acid Rain Program and Clean Air Interstate Rule.

Each of the above programs performs a distinct function, is run independently, and maintains its own data records. As a result of differences in facility records, certain assumptions must be made in creating the Air Pollutant Report. To reconcile differences in facility records between programs, the EPA uses the Facility Registry Service to create a master record for all EPA facility sites. The Air Pollutant Report relies on the linkages identified in the Facility Registry Service to consolidate the different programmatic data into one report.

Another consideration is that while the above programs are distinct, there is some overlap in pollutants covered by the different programs. Where the same pollutant exists in multiple programs, the Air Pollutant Report will list all values. Pollutants reported under multiple programs are not exclusive and should not be added together. Due to programmatic differences in calculation methods and facility coverage, there may be significant discrepancies in reported values. The Air Pollutant Report relies on the Substance Registry Services (SRS) to reconcile nomenclature and ensure pollutant names are consistent across programs, but this does not necessarily mean the values are directly comparable.

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Accessing the Air Pollutant Report

There are two ways to access the Air Pollutant Report from the Facility Search Results (Air) page:

  • Clicking the "A" Report icon in the Reports column of the Results table opens the Air Pollutant Report page in a new tab.
  • Clicking on a row in the Results Table will display the Facility Summary panel to the right of the table, below the Search Statistics panel. The CAA ID hyperlinked within the Facility Summary tab opens the Air Pollutant Report in a new tab.

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Navigating the Air Pollutant Report

The Air Pollutant Report is an interactive report that allows you to view, sort, and filter data of interest. The report is organized into three primary sections:

  • Facility Summary - Displays a map of the facility and other facility identification information. Allows you to filter the data displayed within the Emissions Data table by EPA Emission Inventories. Use the checkboxes next to the EPA emission inventory program name to control the display of data in the Emissions Data table. All programs are included by default.
     
  • Emissions - Presents a tabular display of air emissions data from four different EPA programs. Sort data by clicking on the column header in the Emissions Data table.
     
  • Environmental Conditions - Presents information about air quality classifications in the area in which the facility is located.

Links to access related functionality are provided at the top of the page:

  • Report an Error – Directs you to the Error Reporting form where you can identify and submit comments on potentially erroneous data.
  • Data Dictionary – Opens the Data Dictionary section of this Help page to assist you in understanding the information presented.
  • Download Data – Allows you to download the emissions data presented as a comma separated value (.CSV) file.
  • Print – Opens the Air Pollutant Report in a printer-friendly format.
  • Help – Provides access to this Help page.

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Facility Registry Service

The EPA Facility Registry Service (FRS) seeks to create a master facility record for each facility site covered by EPA programs. By assigning a single FRS record to each facility, all programs applicable to a facility can be tracked back to the single identifier. This is done by creating linkages between the FRS ID and programmatic ID. The FRS master record is established by creating linkages between the FRS record and each programmatic record. The linkages are created by matching the programmatic facility data on facility address, facility name, and corporate ownership.

Each Air Pollutant Report is tied to one FRS record. The existence of linkages between the FRS record and programmatic records for EIS, GHGRP, TRI, and Clean Air Markets Division Business System (CAMDBS) allows ECHO to pull all of the programmatic data into one report. However, the different programs have varying facility definitions which may result in different representations in the Air Pollutant Report. It is possible for a single FRS record to have multiple linkages under a single air program. If emissions data from multiple facilities within a program exist for a single FRS record, the emissions from the different programmatic facilities will be added together in the Air Pollutant Report. The possible occurrence of this can be identified by the existence of multiple IDs for a given program.

While FRS strives to maintain highest level of quality in facility data, it is possible that there may be errors in the facility linkages. More likely than not, such errors would be in the omission of a linkage for a given facility. As each program maintains their own records, it is not uncommon for a facility to have differing facility names or addresses in different databases. The automated scripts FRS uses to develop linkages cannot overcome these discrepancies and so the data must be reconciled manually. Users can report errors directly to FRS. As such, users viewing the Air Pollutant Report should remember that the report is assembled by the EPA and represents EPA’s currently documented understanding of how facilities are regulated.

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Data Dictionary

Data elements that are presented in the Air Pollutant Report are described below. The data dictionary is organized by the primary report sections.

Facility Summary

FRS ID
The Facility Registry Service (FRS) uniquely identifies a facility by assigning an identification number (FRS ID), and uses this FRS ID to link together all EPA program database records (such as permit IDs and facility IDs that facilities use in reporting to EPA).
EPA Region
The EPA region where the facility is located. EPA has 10 regional offices that execute programs within several states and territories.
Latitude/Longitude
Displays the latitude and longitude of the facility as maintained in the program data system indicated in the locational data source.
Locational Data Source
The source database of the facility's latitude and longitude location data.
Industry
The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes associated with the facility. The system was developed to give special attention to developing production-oriented classifications for (a) new and emerging industries, (b) service industries in general, and (c) industries engaged in the production of advanced technologies. NAICS industries are identified by a 6-digit code. The first two digits represent the Industry sector, in which there exist 20 broad sectors. The third digit represents industry subsector, the fourth digit represents industry group, the fifth digit represents industry, and the sixth digit is U.S., Canadian, or Mexican National specific. NAICS Lookup.
ICIS-Air Source ID
The unique identifier in the ICIS-Air database.
ICIS-Air Facility Status
The operational status of the facility in the ICIS-Air database.
Emission Inventories
The Facility Summary section contains a list of the four emission inventories that provide data for this report. The abbreviation of the EPA program is included in parentheses. The unique identifier for each emission inventory is provided. If available, the unique identifier is hyperlinked to access a program-specific report available from another EPA data system.
  • National Emissions Inventory (NEI) - A unique 7-digit number assigned for each facility in the NEI. Prior to the 2008 NEI, a new system ID was assigned to each facility for each NEI release.
  • Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP) - A unique 7-digit number assigned for each facility in the GHGRP.
  • Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) -  A unique 15-character ID assigned for each facility within the TRI program. The format is ZZZZZNNNNNSSSSS, where ZZZZZ = ZIP code, NNNNN = the first 5 consonants of the name, and SSSSS = the first 5 non-blank non-special characters in the street address.
  • Clean Air Markets Division (CAMD) - A unique 4-digit number assigned for each facility in the Clean Air Markets program. FRS identifies this value with the program system acronym of CAMDBS, but it is generally the same identifier as the Office of the Regulatory Information System PLant code (ORISPL) code used by the Energy Information Administration (EIA).
You can filter the Emissions Data table by these inventories. Use the checkboxes next to the EPA program names to control the display of data in the Emissions Data table.
Search for Excess Emission Reports
Provides a link to search for Air Emissions Reports, such as Summary Reports and Excess Emissions Reports.
Search for Spills
Provides a link to the National Response Center, the federal government's national communications center for reporting all hazardous substances releases and oil spills.
Related Reports
If the facility has any related reports available in ECHO, the Related Reports section will appear with hyperlinks to available reports, described below. If multiple reports are available for a particular report type, clicking on the report hyperlink will open an overlay window with hyperlinks to all available reports.
Detailed Facility Report - The Detailed Facility Report (DFR) presents a concise enforcement and compliance history for a selected facility. It provides detailed information about facility characteristics and identifiers, a history of monitoring, violations, and enforcement actions, and incorporates other environmental datasets to provide additional context.

Emissions

 

Emissions Data Tables

The tables in this section of the Air Pollutant Report display emissions for pollutants reported through EPA emission inventory programs. Pollutant emission values are presented by specific pollutant and, where applicable, aggregated pollutant categories, over the 10 most recent complete years of data.

Program
The emission inventory program associated with the record's data.
  • NEI - National Emission Inventory
  • GHG - Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program
  • TRI - Toxic Release Inventory System
  • CAMD - Clean Air Markets Division
Pollutant (Total Aggregate Emissions Data Table)
  • Air Toxics - Substances that are air toxics which are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects, such as reproductive effects or birth defects, or adverse environmental effects. Available for TRI data.
  • Clean Air Market Programs - Pollutants regulated under the Clean Air Markets Programs. The programs lower outdoor concentrations of fine particles, ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, mercury and other significant air pollutants.
  • Criteria Pollutants - Six pollutants regulated under the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). They are particulate matter, photochemical oxidants and ground-level ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and lead. Available for TRI data.
  • Greenhouse Gases - Gases classified as greenhouse gases. Available for GHG data.
  • Hazardous Air Pollutants - Substances that are hazardous air pollutants which are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects, such as reproductive effects or birth defects, or adverse environmental effects. Available for TRI and NEI data.
  • Ozone Depleting Substances - Substances regulated as ozone depleting substances (ODS) under the Montreal Protocol. ODS are split into two groups under the CAA: Class I ODS and Class II ODS. Available for TRI data.
  • Ozone Precursors - Pollutants classified as ozone precursors in Section 182(c)(1) of the CAA. Ozone precursors are Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). Available for TRI data.
  • Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxics - Chemicals covered by the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) program which are subject to reporting under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). Available for TRI data.
Pollutant (Emissions Data Table)
The name of the pollutant being tracked for air emissions.
  • NEI data include both criteria air pollutants (CAPs) and hazardous air pollutants (HAPs).
  • GHG data include emissions of greenhouse gases reported in metric tons carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2e) per year. The following greenhouse gases are reported:
    • Carbon dioxide (CO2)
    • Methane (CH4)
    • Nitrous Oxide (N2O)
    • Sulfur Hexafluoride (SF6)
    • Nitrogen Trichloride (NF3)
    • Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
    • Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
  • TRI includes data on over 650 toxic chemicals and chemical categories. Certain chemicals have "qualifiers" and are reportable only if they are manufactured, processed, or otherwise used in the specific form(s) listed in the chemical list for the applicable reporting year. For information, see TRI-Listed Chemicals for the year of interest. 
  • CAMD data include facility totals of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2), and CO2 for facilities covered under the Acid Rain Program and Clean Air Interstate Rule.
Units
The unit of measure associated with the pollutant emissions data. TRI, NEI, and CAMD data are displayed in pounds. GHG data are displayed as Metric Tons Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (MTCO2e).
Trend
Displays a graphical representation of emissions trends over time, automatically scaled based on each year of data for each record in the table.
Year
Displays the value of the pollutant emission for the past 10 years. Null values indicate that a pollutant emission was not reported. Only pollutants with non-zero emissions reported in at least one of the last 10 years are included in the table.
Greenhouse gas reporting began in 2010, so no values will be populated prior to that year.
NEIs are released on a triennial basis (e.g., 2005, 2008, 2011) and values will not be populated for the interim years.

Environmental Conditions

 

Air Quality

Non-Attainment Area?
Indicates whether the facility is in a nonattainment area, where air pollution levels persistently exceed the National Ambient Air Quality Standards. See About the Data for the nonattainment areas included in ECHO.
Pollutant(s)
The name of the criteria air pollutant(s) for which the area is in nonattainment.

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Reporting Data Errors

If you believe that some of the information in the emissions data table is in error, you may report your findings from the Air Pollutant Report page. Click the "Report an Error" button at the top of the page. 

The error reporting form will ask for your contact information, in order to keep you informed of progress in addressing your report, and a description of the problem. The emissions data table will be displayed on the next screen. Below the data table, select the air emissions program corresponding to the data in question and enter your comment. Please include enough information to allow EPA to identify the data in question and to evaluate your comment.

Once you submit the report, it will be entered into EPA's  Integrated Error Correction Process. You will receive an immediate acknowledgement on the webpage, and status updates as EPA determines how to address the report (see Error Correction Performance Standards).

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why does EPA have four different data systems for tracking air emissions?
Each of the air programs were created as the result of distinct programmatic needs. TRI was created as a result of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act (EPCRA), Clean Air Markets programs are the result of the market based mechanisms introduced in the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments, the GHGRP was created as directed by the 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, and the NEIs are created in order to evaluate the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). Each of these programs had separate needs and such followed their own developmental evolution.
Where is the data in the Air Pollutant Report being populated from?
Data in the ECHO Air Pollutant Report is pulled from a variety of source databases. Data for TRI and GHGRP are copied from the Envirofacts system on a weekly basis. Clean Air Markets data is uploaded by static reports that are run after the emission trading season is over. NEI data is taken from the static files for the respective NEI years (e.g., 2005, 2008, 2011).
Where can I find more detailed emissions information (e.g., unit level data)?
Envirofacts contains detailed data pulls from many of EPA’s source databases. In addition, several of the programs maintain detailed data publication pages. Information on GHGRP data is available through FLIGHT and information on Clean Air Markets data is available through the Air Markets Program Data tool.
Can I sum emissions from different programs together to get facility totals?
No, emissions reported under different programs should not be considered additional. For example, power plants reporting carbon dioxide emissions under the Acid Rain Program must also report the same carbon dioxide emissions under the GHGRP. Although the emissions overlap, both numbers are shown in the Air Pollutant Report.
Why are emissions for the same pollutant different between programs?
There are several reasons that emissions may vary between programs. Possible reasons includes programmatic differences in emission coverage or calculation methods. Different programs also have disparate public release schedules, which may delay the inclusion of data revisions. While it is possible that there are data errors in emissions reported through the different programs, users should first investigate the individual programs for inaccuracies before reporting data errors.

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