National Pollutant Release Inventory: regional synopsis for the Atlantic provinces, chapter 4


On-site Releases

The NPRI defines an on-site release as a discharge of a pollutant to the environment within the boundaries of a reporting facility. This includes emissions to air, discharges to surface waters, and on-site releases to land.

Surface water releases do not include discharges to municipal wastewater treatment plants. These are reported under off-site transfers for treatment.

On-site releases to landfills, designed to accept industrial waste, are required to have appropriate permits issued by provincial environment departments and operate under strict guidelines for use as final disposal sites. In most cases, permitted landfills are managed to minimize the release of pollutants to the natural soil.

On-site releases are categorized as follows:

Air:

  • Stacks or point sources
  • Storage or handling
  • Fugitive emissions
  • Spills
  • Other non-point sources

Surface water:

  • Direct discharges
  • Spills
  • Leaks

Land:

  • Landfill
  • Land treatment
  • Spills
  • Leaks
  • Other land releases

 

Industrial Sectors
Reporting the Largest On-site
Releases of NPRI Pollutants

Top Twenty-five NPRI Pollutants Released On-site in the Largest Quantities in the Atlantic Provinces (Values in tonnes)

The twenty-five NPRI pollutants released on-site in the largest quantities in the Atlantic Provinces are shown below. Pollutants classified as CEPA-toxic or carcinogenic accounted for only 1% of the total volume of on-site releases. Eleven percent of on-site releases of pollutants reported to the NPRI in the Atlantic Provinces for 2000 were to landfills.

Substance (Number of
Release Reports)
Air Water Land Total Change
From 1999
Hydrochloric acid (8) 3,344.9 0.0 0.0 3,344.9 + 80%
Sulphuric acid (26) 2,977.7 31.0 0.0 3,008.7 - 5%
Methanol (18) 2,116.6 624.0 0.0 2,740.6 - 4%
Ammonia - Total (19) 258.8 528.7 0.0 787.6 + 7%
Manganese and its compounds (18) 42.1 171.2 493.0 706.3 + 42%
Ethylene glycol (14) 2.3 0.4 634.9 637.6 + 86%
Nitrate ion in solution at pH >= 6.0 (8) 0.0 497.7 0.0 497.7 + 4%
Chlorine (9) 223.8 0.0 0.0 223.9 - 6%
Chlorine dioxide (6) 169.8 0.0 0.0 169.8 - 34%
Acetaldehyde (6) 141.1 9.7 0.0 150.8 + 32%
Zinc and its compounds (9) 33.5 6.0 105.0 144.5 - 51%
Methyl tert-butyl ether (3) 143.1 0.0 0.0 143.1 + 3%
Formaldehyde (4) T 104.8 14.8 0.0 119.6 + 9%
Isopropyl alcohol (4) 117.8 0.0 0.0 117.8 - 21%
Nickel and its compounds (8) T 32.0 0.1 69.8 102.0 + 44%
Hydrogen sulphide (7) 94.2 0.9 0.0 95.1 - 60%
Chromium and its compounds (6) T 1.3 16.6 45.6 63.5 + 7%
Hydrogen fluoride (2) T 55.6 0.0 0.0 55.6 + 16%
Arsenic and its compounds (5) T 2.0 1.3 49.9 53.3 + 21%
Xylene mixed isomers (6) 51.5 0.7 0.3 52.6 - 17%
Toluene (9) 43.6 0.7 0.2 44.5 - 10%
Vanadium (fume or dust) (2) 42.8 0.0 0.1 42.9 >100 %
Lead (and its compounds) (3) T 25.7 0.7 10.4 36.7 - 40%
Copper (and its compounds) (9) 1.0 0.5 32.6 34.2 >100%
Propylene (2) 33.2 0.0 0.0 33.2 - 26%

T denotes CEPA-toxic or carcinogenic pollutant
> denotes greater than

CEPA-toxic or Carcinogenic Pollutants Released On-site in the Largest Quantities (Values in Tonnes)

Substance (Number of
Release Reports)
Air Water Land Total Change From 1999
Formaldehyde (4) 104.8 14.8 0.0 119.6 + 9%
Nickel (and its compounds) (8) 32.0 0.1 69.8 102.0 + 44%
Chromium (and its compounds) (6) 1.3 16.6 45.6 63.5 + 7%
Hydrogen fluoride (2) 55.6 0.0 0.0 55.6 + 16%
Arsenic (and its compounds) (5) 2.0 1.3 49.9 53.3 + 21%
Lead (and its compounds) (3) 25.7 0.7 10.4 36.7 - 40%
Benzene (5) 19.1 0.2 0.0 19.4 - 5%
Trichloroethylene (1) 13.2 0.0 0.0 13.2 - 25%
Phenanthrene (10) 1.6 0.0 0.0 1.7 NA
Cadmium (and its compounds) (2) 1.4 0.1 0.2 1.7 - 11%

NA denotes Not Applicable

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