DHS Chemical Rule May Impact Farms, Gins, Oil Mills

The Department of Homeland Security published the final Appendix A of the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standard (CFATS). As this rule may impact individual gin, farm and oil mill facilities that store propane, ammonia and ammonium nitrate, industry members are urged to review and determine if a "Top Screen" needs to be completed.

Published: December 20, 2007
Updated: December 20, 2007

Final Appendix A of the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standard

On November 20, 2007 the Department of Homeland Security published the final Appendix A of the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standard (CFATS) in the Federal Register(72 FR 65396; Appendix A: Final Rule (http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/chemsec_appendixafinalrule.pdf ). With the publication of a final Appendix A, all provisions of 6 CFR Part 27, including § 27.210(a)(1)(i), are operative and in effect. The deadline in the CFATS interim final rule for submission of “Top Screens” required by 6 CFR § 27.210(a)(1)(i) is 1/22/08.

A complete list of the chemicals can be found at www.dhs.gov/chemicalsecurity. Just click on "Appendix A List" in the box.  More information regarding the Chemical Security Final Rule is available at this site. This regulation became effective June 8, 2007, except for Appendix A (http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/chemsec_appendixafinalrule.pdf ) which became effective upon its publication in the Federal Register on November 20, 2007.

The following are some of the key changes in the final rule:

1)    Propane is covered in the final rule. The screening quantity is 60,000 lbs (14,285 gal), and individual tanks of less than 10,000 lbs do NOT need to be counted.

2)    Chlorine is still on the list, but the quantity has been adjusted upwards to 2,500 lbs. In addition, small containers must be counted if there are more than 5 in a location, due to possible use as an IED multiplier.

3)    Ammonia, including anhydrous, has been adjusted to the RMP threshold quantity of 10,000 lbs.

4)    Ammonium Nitrate with a concentration of at least 23% in quantities of 2,000 lbs or greater will need to be reported.

5)    Urea and acetone have both been removed from the Appendix A list and will not need to be reported.

6)    Other chemicals on the list have been generally adjusted to the RMP quantity. In addition, those chemicals that were listed as “any quantity” now have a specific amount that will generally exclude “small” quantities used for lab or research purposes.

7)    Farm crop protection chemicals are not included in Appendix A. 

The list of chemicals and thresholds above which facilities must submit to DHS's "Top Screen" process, which analyzes the security threat of the facility based on several parameters, are in Appendix A. The Top Screen process can be completed on the DHS web site www.dhs.gov/chemicalsecurity. The facility registers for a username and password. Once facilities complete the Top Screen process DHS will notify them within 30 days whether they need further work regarding the vulnerability of their facility to attack. Lower risk facilities may be able to utilize vulnerability assessments completed over the last 4 years to satisfy DHS's requirements. Facilities with little or no risk will be notified by DHS that "no further action" on their part is necessary. Higher risk facilities will be required to complete DHS's vulnerability assessment, and subsequent to completion of the assessment, a significant security plan.