C.H.E.M. Group

Chemical Hazard Emergency Management: GIS Solutions


Text Box: C.H.E.M. Group is a team of students at Texas State University, San Marcos, whose goal is to provide emergency planning agencies with the geographic tools to optimize preparedness in chemical hazard emergencies. This is achieved through the creation of chemical hazard databases that are integrated into Geographic Information System (GIS) software.

From September to December of 2010, C.H.E.M. Group worked with the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) in Victoria County, Texas. The goal of our project was to provide the LEPC with a geographic database of facilities or sites that manufacture, use, store, or transport hazardous chemicals in the Victoria, Texas

Victoria Stengel


Joanne McNab

Dustin Lawrence

Janette McKercher

Project Manager

Assistant Project Manager

GIS Analyst

Web Master

Our Team


Questions about this project must go through Dr. Alberto Giordano of the Department of Geography: ag22@txstate.edu

This project was a course requirement for GEO 4427

The role of the Victoria County LEPC is to form a partnership between local government and industries and to enhance emergency hazard preparedness. The responsibilities of the LEPC include:

· Receiving emergency and hazardous chemical inventory forms (Tier II reports) from the owner or operator of each chemical facility

· Being informed by the emergency coordinator of hazardous chemical releases

· Receiving from each facility the name of the representative that will participate in the emergency planning process

· Managing information and providing information to the public

· Promoting  public awareness of chemical hazards in the community

· Conducting hazard analyses

· Checking existing response capabilities of LEPC members


Area. This was done by taking data from Tier II reports and integrating it into ArcMap, a GIS computer application. This website documents the results and processes of our project with Victoria County’s OEM AND LEPC.

The mission of the Texas Tier II Chemical Reporting Program in the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is to protect the public health and environment by providing current and accurate information about hazardous chemicals and their health effects and by ensuring that the regulated community complies with the requirements of the state and federal community right-to-know laws.

Community Right-to-Know for Citizens, Community Planners and Emergency Responders

This Community Right-to-Know Program has been established under both the federal Emergency Planning & Community Right-to-Know Act [EPCRA, which is also known as the Superfund Amendments & Reauthorization Act (SARA), Title III] and the Texas Community Right-to-Know Acts (TCRAs, Health & Safety Code, Chapters 505, 506 & 507).

The Texas Tier II Chemical Reporting Program is the state repository for EPCRA-required Emergency Planning Letters (EPLs), which are one-time notifications to the state from facilities that have certain extremely hazardous chemicals in specified amounts. The Program is also the state repository for EPCRA/state-required hazardous chemical inventory reports called Texas Tier Two Reports.

The Tier2 Submit electronic files contain facility and owner/operator identification information, as well as detailed data on hazardous chemicals stored at reporting facilities within the state. Emergency response personnel, such as fire fighters and healthcare providers, can use Tier Two data to protect workers and the community during a hazardous chemical emergency. In addition, Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs) and local emergency managers can use Tier Two data to plan response strategies within their communities. Private citizens in the community may request and receive copies of the electronic Tier2 Submit data files, as well as custom reports generated from the electronic Tier Two data.

The Program also provides outreach for compliance on both the federal and state laws and supports LEPCs in community right-to-know planning and education.


What is the Victoria LEPC?

What is Tier II Reporting?