Database of 3,646 US chemical plants in 2003: http://cryptome.org/chem/chemicals.zip (Zipped DBF, 284KB)
Source: Wall Street Journal, May 21, 2003
5 March 2005
The New York Times reports today on the dispute over removing sensitive information about hazardous facilities:
Efforts to Hide Sensitive Data Pit 9/11 Concerns Against Safety
By CHRISTOPHER DREW
The dispute illustrates a growing push to mask sensitive data about the nation's industrial base from the prying eyes of potential terrorists. In the tug of war over tank cars and other industrial information, critics question whether the move toward secrecy is overwhelming safety concerns and even chilling debates over how to eliminate the vulnerabilities.
People who live near chemical and nuclear plants, dams and oil and gas pipelines complain that it has become harder to find out about disaster plans and environmental hazards, and some have sued for more information. Engineering reports have been stripped from government Web sites, and several agencies are creating new controls on sensitive information that go far beyond the wide-ranging classification system built in the cold war.
Federal officials say although they are trying to strike a reasonable balance, some clashes are inevitable, and more are likely to occur. If delicate information leaks out, "it gives our adversaries too much of a picture of what our vulnerabilities are," Jack L. Johnson Jr., chief security officer at the Department of Homeland Security, said.
Internal government e-mail messages show that months before the train bombings last March in Madrid, transportation officials stopped the Defense Intelligence Agency from releasing a report on rail vulnerabilities in the United States.
The messages, which were obtained by The New York Times from a former federal official, show that the report was intended to spark debate among officials on improving rail security. But after complaints from the industry, one senior transportation official helped block the report by arguing that if it became public "I could foresee this paper being a handout in the next session of Al Qaeda's rail-attack course."
Another hot area of debate over secrecy is the atomic energy industry. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has stashed away an enormous trove of documents about nuclear power plants, suspending access to much of its Web site while weeding out reports that might aid terrorists.
A spokeswoman for the commission, Sue F. Gagner, said that access to 380,000 documents was suspended last October and that 120,000 had been made available again.
"We think it's very important to be diligent about having information that could potentially be helpful to a terrorist," Ms. Gagner said.
"You can hide the information, but if the vulnerability still exists, the bad guys will find it," said Gary D. Bass, executive director of OMB Watch, a group in Washington that supports more openness. "So let's reduce the vulnerability instead."
Officials said many companies had long resisted disclosing security flaws to the government out of fear of leaks. Mr. Johnson said that the department was blending what it obtained from the companies with intelligence about terrorist intentions and that it intended to share much of that analysis with local officials who agree to keep it confidential.
Sometimes the battles are more visible. Since chlorine leaking from a derailed tank car killed nine people and injured hundreds last month in South Carolina, the fight over the railroad placards has emerged as the most potent symbol of the debate.
The Homeland Security and Transportation Departments have been considering whether to remove the placards since August.
Firefighters, railroad workers and large chemical companies are adamant about keeping the placards. Statistics show that chemicals leak from dozens of rail cars a year and that deaths occur periodically.
The railroads also say they are working to create a system that meets security and safety needs.
But two studies by the Transportation Department have shown that the alternatives, electronic systems that could transmit lists of chemicals on a train by radio or satellite, would be more expensive, cumbersome and less effective on safety. Texas A&M University is finishing another study.
Jamie Conrad, a lawyer for the American Chemistry Council, which lobbies for large chemical makers, said he could see how a placard might "advertise a little bit" the best cars to attack.
"But where we come down is that if you take it off, you know that people will be killed in accidents," Mr. Conrad said. "And you're basically balancing that against the theoretical prospect that terrorists might be lurking on that corner."
Most of the addresses of dangerous chemical facilities listed below are available online through Google. A few could not be verified and are marked [?] to show best guess of location. Errata welcomed, send to firstname.lastname@example.org
Anhydrous ammonia is the chemical most commonly listed due to the huge amount produced by the industry, primarily for fertilizer and a variety of other uses including explosives. Other chemicals are equally or more lethal in smaller amounts. See state listings for other wider range of chemical hazards from which the list below is derived:
As noted in the file above thanks to the State PIRGs and the Wayback Machine for providing this information.
Storing the largest amounts of extremely hazardous substances.*
*Extremely hazardous substances as defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Air Act, Section 112(r).
Terraserver Aerial Photo/Topographical Map
|City||Maximum amount in a single process (lbs)||Chemical|
|ALASKA NITROGEN PRODUCTS LLC||KENAI||150,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|AL||OLIN CORPORATION MCINTOSH, ALABAMA PLANT||MCINTOSH||31,000,000||Chlorine|
|AR||TERRA NITROGEN LIMITED PARTNERSHIP, BLYTHEVILLE||BLYTHEVILLE||90,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|AZ||APACHE NITROGEN PRODUCTS, INC.||BENSON||9,175,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|CO||STATELINE ANHYDROUS AMMONIA PLANT||HOLYOKE||2,590,673||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|CT||CYTEC INDUSTRIES INC., WALLINGFORD CT PLANT||WALLINGFORD||2,080,500||Formaldehyde (solution)|
|DC||BLUE PLAINS WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT||WASHINGTON||180,000||Chlorine|
|DE||DUPONT - EDGE MOOR, DE FACILITY||EDGE MOOR||9,825,600||Chlorine|
|FL||IMC-AGRICO COMPANY, PORT SUTTON TERMINAL||TAMPA||100,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|GA||PCS PHOSPHATE||GARDEN CITY||98,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|HI||BREWER ENVIRONMENTAL INDUSTRIES, LLC -BARBERS PT.||KAPOLEI||120,000||Chlorine|
|IA||FARMLAND INDUSTRIES, FORT DODGE NITROGEN PLANT||FORT DODGE||180,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|ID||AGRIUM CONDA PHOSPHATE OPERATIONS||SODA SPRINGS||1,220,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|IL||ET-4 TRILLA TERMINAL [?]||MATTOON||140,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|IN||HUNTINGTON TERMINAL||HUNTINGTON||150,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|KS||FARMLAND INDUSTRIES, INC-DODGE CITY NITROGEN PLANT||DODGE CITY||120,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|KY||HENDERSON TERMINAL [?]||HENDERSON||90,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|LA||TAFT TERMINAL||TAFT||240,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|MA||SOLUTIA INC., INDIAN ORCHARD PLANT||SPRINGFIELD||2,600,000||Vinyl acetate monomer|
|MD||HAWKINS POINT PLANT||BALTIMORE||1,800,000||Chlorine|
|ME||HOLTRACHEM MANUFACTURING COMPANY [Closed Sept 2000]||ORRINGTON
|MI||CF INDUSTRIES, INC. - PORT HURON TERMINAL||KIMBALL||60,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|MN||CF INDUSTRIES, INC. - GLENWOOD TERMINAL||GLENWOOD||120,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|MO||LAROCHE INDUSTRIES, INC. CRYSTAL CITY OPERATIONS [?]||FESTUS||60,012,570||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|MS||MISSISSIPPI CHEMICAL CORPORATION [?]||YAZOO CITY||76,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|MT||MONTANA SULPHUR & CHEMICAL COMPANY||NE OF BILLINGS||3,080,000||Hydrogen sulfide|
|NC||BORDEN CHEMICAL, INC., FAYETTEVILLE PLANT||FAYETTEVILLE||3,000,000||Formaldehyde (solution)|
|ND||CF INDUSTRIES, INC. - GRAND FORKS TERMINAL||GRAND FORKS||120,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|NE||FARMLAND INDUSTRIES, INC. - HASTINGS TERMINAL||HASTINGS||140,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|NH||HAMPSHIRE CHEMICAL CORPORATION||NASHUA||945,655||Hydrocyanic acid|
|NJ||GENERAL CHEMICAL CORPORATION||NEWARK||5,000,000||Oleum (Fuming Sulfuric acid)|
|NM||NEW MEXICO ADHESIVES, L.L.C.||LAS VEGAS||2,675,000||Formaldehyde (solution)|
|NV||COASTAL CHEM, INC. - BATTLE MOUNTAIN, NEVADA||BATTLE MOUNTAIN||6,100,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|NY||OCCIDENTAL CHEMICAL CORPORATION - NIAGARA PLANT||NIAGARA FALLS||17,000,000||Chlorine|
|OH||PCS NITROGEN OHIO L. P.||LIMA||125,938,200||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|OK||FARMLAND INDUSTRIES, INC., ENID NITROGEN PLANT||ENID||120,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|OR||RIVERGATE TERMINAL||PORTLAND||101,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|PA||DYNO NOBEL INC. (DONORA PLANT)||DONORA||18,022,528||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|RI||TANNER INDUSTRIES, INC. [?]||EAST PROVIDENCE||514,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|SC||NATIONAL STARCH AND CHEMICAL COMPANY WOODRUFF||ENOREE||3,900,000||Vinyl acetate monomer|
|SD||BATH FACILITY, STATION #19||ABERDEEN||2,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|TN||OLIN CORPORATION, CHARLESTON TN PLANT [?]||CHARLESTON||26,000,000||Chlorine|
|TX||NECHES INDUSTRIAL PARK,INC.||BEAUMONT||89,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|UT||LAROCHE INDUSTRIES, INC. - GENEVA NITROGEN PLANT||OREM||8,558,812||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|VA||ALLIED SIGNAL - HOPEWELL PLANT||HOPEWELL||40,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|VT||ST. ALBANS PLANT [Ben & Jerry's]||ST. ALBANS||31,410||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|WA||KENNEWICK PLANT - HEDGES AREA||KENNEWICK||100,200,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|
|WI||BORDEN CHEMICAL, INC., SHEBOYGAN PLANT||SHEBOYGAN||750,000||Formaldehyde (solution)|
High-resolution photo from DEP, State of WV:
|WY||COASTAL CHEM, INC. - CHEYENNE WYOMING||CHEYENNE||67,000,000||Ammonia (anhydrous)|