EPA University Challenge

EPA University Challenge

Project Leads: Michael C. Kumpf and Emery Wilson

Project Sponsor: College of Chemistry

TGIF Grant: $23,400

Project Theme: Education and Behavioral Change

Application Submission

Project Description: As an extension of the services provided by UCB College of Chemistry’s Chemical ReUse Facility (CRF), high quality chemistry & chemical safety information has been compiled into a “Safety Sheet” format that is user-friendly and readily comprehensible to researchers, EH&S professionals, and the graduate & undergraduate students, which is available to those that have access to the CRF searchable database. Unlike more traditional Safety Data Sheets (SDS’s) made available by chemical manufacturers, these Safety Sheets provide many active weblinks in their PDF design, and act as springboards to other websites where source information is obtained, readily allowing for further investigation should the reader wish to follow up on any particular detail or facet. The federal Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) program, which tracks chemical releases & disposal operations across the nation, offers an annual contest known as the EPA University Challenge which seeks novel ways in which publicly-available TRI data can be disseminated and utilized. In addition to all the other Hazard Communication information included with them, CRF’s Safety Sheets devote an entire section to TRI information, including information on our state’s, region’s, and nation’s releases, a 5-year history of those releases, and portrayal of the facility that releases the highest quantity of the chemical in question. This is done to help make the chemical’s profile more relevant and personal to the user, giving them a picture of where those chemical assets are located both locally and nationally. If the Challenge submission succeeds, CoC will make the Safety Sheets for the entire TRI chemical list available to the public for a finite period of time, which will immensely broaden the audience that can freely access this information, and thereby empower the campus community, as well as the American public, with a greater degree of Hazard Communication information than they have had ready access to previously.

Project Goals: To provide the support student assistant data entry support required to successfully fulfill our commitment to EPA to complete detailed Safety Sheets for all chemicals that appear on the EPA TRI list