The Fertilizer Industry issued a statement regarding its position on the new report from the Government Accountability Office regarding chemical safety.
"The fertilizer industry – manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers – is committed to the safety of its workers, emergency responders and communities. The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) supports the Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) call for enhanced data sharing between federal agencies and information sharing between the industry and government agencies.
"We are highly focused on ensuring that every fertilizer retailer in the nation has access to the information necessary to be in full compliance with all federal regulations. As recognized in the GAO report, we have stepped forward to develop ResponsibleAg, an independent organization whose sole purpose will be to audit retail facilities for compliance with federal regulations. ResponsibleAg’s Board of Directors held its first meeting earlier this month, and we anticipate that trained and certified inspectors will conduct the first audits in 2015.
"We are also strongly committed to ensuring that federal government agencies have access to information about the unique features of retail agribusinesses. We regularly engage with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). Earlier this month, we organized a tour of retail ammonium nitrate facilities for personnel from DHS, EPA and OSHA. We appreciate the time that agency staff took to learn about our businesses and believe that this type of industry-government cooperation will facilitate safe and secure storage and handling of ammonium nitrate in the future. We want to ensure that farmers continue to have access to the nutrients necessary to grow the crops that provide the world with food, fuel and fiber."