Environmental Health and Safety (EHS)

Chemical Safety Division - Department of Homeland Security

The U. S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently finalized the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standard (6 CFR Part 27) intended to identify security risks associated with chemical facilities. Included in the standard is a list of Chemicals of Interest and Screening Threshold Quantities. The list is composed of chemicals which the DHS feels is at risk of causing harm to the public through release, theft, or sabotage. A facility which has possession of any of these chemicals over the screening threshold quantities must submit to further screening and security assessments from the DHS.

 

To determine the type and quantity of chemicals that will be subject to the preliminary screening process, DHS examined the following three security issues:

1. Release – quantities of toxic, flammable, or explosive chemicals that have the potential to create significant adverse consequences for human life or health if intentionally released or detonated;
2. Theft and diversion – chemicals that have the potential, if stolen or diverted, to be used or converted into weapons; and
3. Sabotage and contamination – chemicals that, if mixed with other readily available materials, have the potential to create significant adverse consequences for human life or health.

 

Environmental Health & Safety staff conducted comprehensive audits for all laboratories at UT Health Science Center at San Antonio to determine which of these chemicals are possessed and quantities. At present, the Health Science Center possesses approximately 70 of the 325 chemicals of interest, and all fall under the specified screening threshold quantities. Environmental Health & Safety will continue to monitor the use of these chemicals of interest in order to comply with these new regulations. To view the DHS Chemicals of Interest list, please click on the link below.