On August 1, President Obama signed an Executive Order to improve the safety and security of chemical facilities and reduce the risks of hazardous chemicals to workers and communities. This action was in response to the tragic April explosion at a West, Texas, fertilizer plant. Even though chemicals and the facilities that store and distribute them are vital to our nation’s economy, handling those same chemicals present risks that need to be addressed. The order builds on Federal agencies’ current, continuous efforts to reduce the dangers associated with hazardous chemicals.
The Executive Order on Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security directs government to improve operational coordination with state and local partners; enhance Federal agency coordination and information sharing; modernize policies, regulations and standards; and work with stakeholders to identify best practices.