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Designated kind of release into the environment

Term
Designated kind of release into the environment
Definition

each of the following is a designated kind of release into the environment:

  • intentional release during use to land, biota, natural waterways or municipal water supplies
  • intentional release to air during use (other than solely domestic or personal use)
  • if the industrial chemical is introduced for an end use in firefighting—release (intentional or otherwise) into the environment
  • if the industrial chemical is introduced for an end use offshore—release (intentional or otherwise) into the ocean.

 

More information

 

These are uses that may result in direct exposure of a chemical to the environment, where capture and treatment of the chemical before it is released into the environment is not possible.

We refer to introductions of an industrial chemical that involve a designated kind of release into the environment as a specified class of introduction.

We have an increased level of concern for specified classes of introductions because:

  • there is a higher potential for particular hazards
  • there are high levels of human or environmental exposure

For this reason, there may be additional or different requirements when working out your introduction category, as well as additional record-keeping obligations.

Introductions that do not involve a designated kind of release into the environment

For most industrial uses, a chemical will end up captured, treated or disposed through waste-management facilities. These methods limit the amount of the chemical getting into the environment and reduces the risk that the chemical will cause harm — which means that most industrial uses of a chemical do not involve a designated kind of release into the environment.

Introductions of chemicals that are released to waste-treatment facilities as a normal part of their use do not involve a designated kind of release into the environment. Such facilities include sewage treatment plants, landfill, waste incinerators, tailing dams or other onsite waste management entities. These facilities prevent or significantly reduce the proportion of a chemical that is released to the environment.

Examples:

  • Introductions of chemicals used in cosmetics do not involve a designated kind of release into the environment. These chemicals are disposed to landfill or wastewater after end use. Wastewater is then treated at sewage treatment plants which typically removes a large portion of the chemical before release of the treated water to the environment. Chemicals in cosmetics are not intentionally released to the environment. Their use is not considered a designated kind of release into the environment. 
  • Introductions of chemicals that are used in mining for processing ore do not involve a designated kind of release into the environment if the residue is sufficiently contained in tailings dams after use. Tailings dams are intended as a permanent containment of the residue produced from mining. These dams have risk-management protocols and release controls as part of their normal operation to prevent release to the environment. Their use is not considered a designated kind of release into the environment. 

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