June 23, 2023
By Krystal Spickler, program manager, Supply Chain team, UL Solutions
Last year, California Assembly Bill (AB 2059) was passed. This bill amended the existing portions of the California code outlining requirements for Hazardous Materials Business Plans (HMBP).
The new changes went into effect Jan. 1, 2023. They include new definitions of “consumer products” and “retail establishment,” recordkeeping requirements applicable to suppliers meeting particular criteria, and notification requirements for handlers of hazardous materials for removal or transfer to another location.
Summary of the Existing Requirements
Businesses in California are required to establish a HMBP if they meet any of the following, among additional criteria outlined in section 25507 of the HMBP code text:
- Handles a hazardous material or mixture containing a hazardous material in a quantity at any one time equal to or exceeding 55 gallons for liquids, 500 pounds for solids, or 200 cubic feet for compressed gases.
- Required to submit chemical inventory data in accordance with section 11022 of Title 42 of the United States Code.
- Handles (at any one time) an amount of hazardous material that is equal to or exceeds the planning threshold quantity as noted in the HMBP code section.
Plans must be prepared electronically and submitted through the statewide information management system. In most instances, this information is recertified on an annual basis.
Following certain events (such as a change in address/ownership or new materials or handling volumes), businesses have 30 days to submit updated information. Plans are required to include the following for every business location in scope:
- Detailed information on inventory reporting, including data points such as hazard information, CAS number, chemical name, common name, physical state, chemical location, and chemical amounts (average and maximum).
- Site maps for any locations in scope of the plan requirements (including but not limited to orientation, loading areas, road, adjacent streets, storm and sewer drains, emergency shutoffs, hazardous material handling/storage areas, and any other additional information deemed necessary).
- Emergency response plans and procedures intended for threatened or actual release of a hazardous material, including local emergency and program agency contains, procedures for mitigation of release, and evacuations.
- Training, including annual (including refresher courses) and new employee training, in safety procedures for hazardous material release or threatened release.
Threatened or actual release of hazardous materials under the HMBP must be reported accordingly. For facilities in scope of the requirements, reporting shall take place immediately upon discovery.
Specific materials are exempted in the Code. This does include those that meet the definition of a consumer product (as defined in the Code) that are handled at/found in a retail establishment and intended for direct sales to consumers. It is worth noting that this exemption does not apply to separate warehouses or distribution centers or manufacturing facilities where no direct-to-consumer sales occur. Consumer products with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) or Hazardous Materials Identification System (HMIS) ratings of 3 or 4 stored in quantities at or above certain thresholds at any time are also not included in the exemption.
Recordkeeping Requirements for Suppliers
Suppliers (defined as ‘a manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler, or retailer in the state that sells or provides hazardous materials to a business in the state’) are subject to additional recordkeeping requirements under the updates. Suppliers of hazardous materials listed by the US Department of Transportation and classified in two or more hazard categories in the California Environmental Reporting system must meet additional requirements. Records for sale or transfer of materials to a business in the state must be maintained for at least one year and contain specific information, including but not limited to the UN number of the material, quantity, name and address of the business, and destination of the material.
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