Business Plan/EPCRA 312

News & Updates


​The Business Plan program was established in 1986. Its purpose is to prevent or minimize the damage to public health and safety and the environment, from a release or threatened release of hazardous materials. It also satisfies community right-to-know laws. This is accomplished by requiring businesses that handle hazardous materials in quantities equal to  or greater than 55 gallons of a liquid, 500 pounds of a solid, or 200 cubic feet of compressed gas, or extremely hazardous substances above the threshold planning quantity (40 CFR, Part 355, Appendix A) to:

  • Inventory their hazardous materials
  • Develop  site map
  • Develop an emergency plan
  • Implement a training program for employees

Businesses must submit this information electronically to the statewide information management system (California Environmental Reporting System, or CERS). For help in doing this, businesses should contact their local implementing agency (Certified Unified Program Agency or CUPA). Once the submittal has been made, the CUPA will verify the information and provide it to agencies responsible for the protection of public health and safety and the environment. These agencies include:

  • Fire Departments
  • Hazardous Material Response Teams
  • Local Environmental Regulatory Groups (i.e. Tahoe Regional Planning Agency)

The Public also has a right to review most of this information. However, the release of confidential and trade secret information to the public is regulated by state and federal law. This satisfies community right-to-know laws and facilities local land use decisions. For public requests of information contact the CUPAs directly.


The federal equivalent to the Business Plan program is the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) 312 reporting requirements. Owners and operators are required to prepare and have available Safety Data Sheets (SDS) under the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Hazard Communication Standard and must submit an inventory of their hazardous chemicals to the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC), Local Emergency Preparedness Committee (LEPC), and the local fire department annually on March 1st. This requirement is achieved through compliance with the Business Plan program.

For questions please contact Jack Harrah at (916) 845-8759 or


State Statute and Regulation:

Statute: Health and Safety Code Sections 25500-25519

Regulation: Title 19, California, Code of Regulations, Division 2, Chapter 4, Article 4


Federal Statute and Regulation:

Statute: United States Code, Title 42, Section 11021-11022

Regulation: Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 370