TRI Overview

TRI BannerTRI iconThe Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) tracks the management of over 650 toxic chemicals that pose a threat to human health and the environment. U.S. facilities in certain industry sectors that manufacture, process, or otherwise use these chemicals in amounts above established levels must report how each chemical is managed through recycling, energy recovery, treatment, and releases to the environment. A “release” of a chemical means that it is emitted to the air or water, or placed in some type of land disposal. The information submitted by facilities to the EPA and states is compiled annually as the Toxics Release Inventory or TRI, and is stored in a publicly accessible database in Envirofacts.

TRI data are available for all facilities that have submitted a Form R or Form A to EPA since the program began in 1987.  TRI facilities are legally required to report to EPA by July 1st of each year.  The most recent data reported are made available in late July with updates occurring from August through October. The TRI National Analysis report, in which EPA provides analyses and interpretations of the most recent data, is published in December of each year.  More information on the TRI reporting cycle.

TRI information helps support informed decision-making by industry, government, non-governmental organizations and the public. Note that TRI does not provide any safety or health information about these chemicals and compounds. TRI data, in conjunction with other information, can be used as a starting point in evaluating exposures that may result from industrial activities which involve toxic chemicals. More information on factors to consider before using TRI data (37 pp, 2MB, About PDF).

There are many tools available within Envirofacts for accessing and analyzing TRI data, including:

  • TRI Explorer: Generate reports on releases, transfers, and waste managed that can be displayed by facility, chemical, geographic area, industry (NAICS code), reporting years, or mapped. Users may also generate State Reports.
  • TRI Search: Find basic facility information and aggregate chemical data for any facility that has reported to EPA since 1987.
  • TRI Form R Search: Review TRI information submitted on Form R.
  • TRI Form R & A Download: Download specific TRI Form R and Form A data elements.
  • TRI EZ Search: Create a report on a single subject area using a limited set of TRI data elements.
  • TRI Customized Search: Create a tailored query/report on multiple subject areas using the most comprehensive set to TRI data elements.

Each year, EPA also publishes documents and webpages that provide analysis and interpretation of the most recent TRI data, including national and local trends of toxic chemical releases to the environment. Geo-specific analyses include Indian Country and Alaskan Native Villages, large aquatic ecosystems, urban communities, and state factsheets. TRI National Analysis documents are available online and many are in Spanish.