CFATS – Will Congress Help?

It's fairly well-known that the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) is set to expire this year (Oct. 4, 2009), and that many in the industry are looking to Congress to reauthorize the program.

For example, Cal Dooley, president and CEO of the American Chemistry Council, supports making the CFATS program permanent.

According to his commentary in the June 17 edition of the Houston Chronicle – "Extend law that regulates chemical-facility security" –"Our groups supported the legislation because it improved security across the country. American Chemistry Council (ACC) members have spent $6.5 billion since 2001 on improving security at our 2,000 facilities nationwide. . . . This law raised the bar for the 5,000 other facilities around the country that store chemicals. We believe Congress should reauthorize the law, because protecting these facilities is simply too important. "

Chemical Processing also has covered this topic on several occasions. Most recently, Lynn Bergeson, Chemical Processing's Regulatory Editor, wrote "Anti-Terrorism Mandates Face Major Revision." In this column, she
noted, "Provisions in any reauthorizing legislation may be significantly tougher than in earlier bills."

We also made CFATS the topic our cover story for March 2009: "Defuse CFATS Challenges," 
where it was noted that CFATS required over 36,000 sites handling specific chemicals of interest to complete a Top Screen. From this group, the Department of Homeland Security tentatively designated nearly 7,000 as “high risk” chemical sites.

In this article we added a poll asking: If CFATS apply to your site, how is it addressing security?

How is your site dealing with potential adversaries?

To take the survey, click here.