Frequent Questions

How does a facility report batteries for Tier II?

A facility has few lead-acid batteries (non-consumer type) on site. How does the facility report these batteries on the Tier II form?

The facility must first determine if there are any hazardous chemicals or extremely hazardous substances (EHSs) in the batteries.  Most batteries contain sulfuric acid, an EHS, and then some non-EHSs.  The facility must evaluate if sulfuric acid should be reported on the Tier II form by aggregating the amount of sulfuric acid in each battery and determine if the total quantity meets the threshold level.  The threshold level for EHSs established in 40 CFR part 370 is 500 lbs or the TPQ, whichever is lower.  The threshold planning quantity for sulfuric acid is 1,000 lbs (40 CFR part 355, Appendix A and B).  Therefore, if the total amount of sulfuric acid is at or above 500 lbs, which is the reporting threshold under sections 311 and 312, then the facility may choose to report the batteries indicating that sulfuric acid, an EHS is present above the threshold.  The facility also has the option to report sulfuric acid on the form if the total amount in all batteries is above 500 pounds.  Although the options for reporting are provided in the statute and the regulations in 40 CFR part 370, the statute and the regulations also state that reporting under EPCRA Section 311 (MSDS reporting) and Section 312 (inventory reporting) should be consistent (40 CFR §370.14(b)).  It is important for emergency responders to obtain accurate information that the facility has batteries that contain sulfuric acid above the reporting threshold.  The preamble to the final rule, July 26, 1990, (55 FR 30632) provides instructions on how to fill out the Tier II form for the two options.  Since the batteries also contain some non-EHSs such as lead, EPA has provided in the preamble to the final rule of July 26, 1990, that the facility is not required to aggregate the amount of lead in each battery. If the facility chooses to aggregate the non-EHSs in the batteries, however, it may do so.

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