Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Program

Addition of a Nonylphenol Category

Rule Summary

On September 30, 2014, EPA announced that it is adding a nonylphenol category to the TRI list of reportable chemicals. Nonylphenol is highly toxic to aquatic organisms and has been found in natural waters. Because of nonylphenol's toxicity, chemical properties, and widespread use to make other chemicals, concerns have been raised over the potential risks to aquatic organisms from exposure to nonylphenol.

Rule History

Basis for Adding a Nonylphenol Category

EPA reviewed the available ecological toxicity data for nonylphenol from EPA's 2005 Aquatic Life Ambient Water Quality Criteria – Nonylphenol (PDF)(96  pp, 291 K, About PDF). EPA's technical evaluation of that data concluded that nonylphenol can reasonably be anticipated to cause, because of its toxicity, significant adverse effects in aquatic organisms and therefore meets the TRI listing criteria.

Nonylphenol is being added as a TRI chemical category because there is no single Chemical Abstracts Service Registry Number (CASRN) that adequately captures what is referred to by industry as nonylphenol.

Uses of Nonylphenol

Nonylphenol is used in a variety of industrial applications and consumer products like detergents, emulsifiers, wetting agents, and de-foaming agents. 

Timing of Nonylphenol Addition

As part of EPA's efforts to enhance the existing chemicals program under the Toxic Substances Control Act, on August 18, 2010, EPA issued an Action Plan for Nonylphenol and Nonylphenol Ethoxylates (PDF)(13 pp, 127 K, About PDF). The plan outlined the courses of action the Agency is considering pursuing in the near term to address its concerns for these chemicals. One of the steps identified in the plan is to add nonylphenol to the EPCRA Section 313 (TRI) chemical list.

Definition of the Nonylphenol Category

EPA is defining the nonylphenol category using a list of chemical names and associated CASRNs as indicated below:

CAS Number Chemical Name
104-40-5 4-Nonylphenol
11066-49-2 Isononylphenol
25154-52-3 Nonylphenol
26543-97-5 4-Isononylphenol
84852-15-3 4-Nonylphenol, branched
90481-04-2 Nonylphenol, branched

Additional Resources

Final Rule (PDF)(8 pp, 291 K, About PDF)
Proposed Rule (PDF)(11 pp, 331 K, About PDF)


EPA estimates that 54 facilities will be affected by this rule. 43 of these are expected to submit 43 TRI reporting Form Rs containing release and waste management data for nonylphenol. The other 11 facilities are expected to submit the shorter TRI reporting Form A. The final rule is effective for the 2015 TRI reporting year with the first forms due by July 1, 2016.