CFATS is the Nation’s first regulatory program focused specifically on security at high-risk chemical facilities. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), through the Infrastructure Security Compliance Division (ISCD), administers the CFATS program by working with facilities to ensure they have security measures in place to reduce the risks associated with certain hazardous chemicals, and prevent them from being exploited in a terrorist attack.
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Under CFATS, a chemical facility is any establishment or individual that possesses or plans to possess any of the 300 chemicals of interest (COI) in Appendix A at or above the listed Screening Threshold Quantity (STQ). These facilities must report their chemical holdings to DHS via an online survey, known as a Top-Screen. DHS uses the Top-Screen information a facility submits to determine if the facility is considered high-risk and must develop a security plan.
CFATS regulation applies to facilities across many industries—chemical manufacturing, storage, and distribution, energy and utilities, agriculture and food, explosives, mining, electronics, plastics, universities and laboratories, paint and coatings, healthcare and pharmaceuticals.
Chemical security is not a temporary issue. As threats evolve, the Department is committed to working with stakeholders to protect the Nation’s highest-risk chemical infrastructure.
Read or download a printer-friendly CFATS Overview Fact Sheet.
CFATS Act of 2014
Initially authorized by Congress in 2007 (6 CFR Part 27), the program uses a dynamic multi-tiered risk assessment process to identify high-risk chemical facilities. After being assigned a tier, facilities are required to meet and maintain performance-based security standards appropriate to the facilities and the risk they pose.
On December 18, 2014, the Protecting and Securing Chemical Facilities from Terrorist Attacks Act of 2014 (“CFATS Act of 2014”), was signed into law. The Act recodified and reauthorized the CFATS program for four years.
Executive Order 13650
On August 1, 2013, the Executive Order on Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security (EO 13650) directed the federal government to improve the safety and security of chemical facilities and reduce the risks of hazardous chemicals to workers and communities. The EO established the Chemical Facility Safety and Security Working Group (Working Group)—tri-chaired by DHS, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Secretary of Labor—to oversee this effort.
In response, DHS created the Infrastructure Protection (IP) Gateway—a repository of critical infrastructure tools and information—to improve coordination between Federal, State and local governments, and community stakeholders, and worked with stakeholders to strengthen the CFATS program.
Visit the CFATS and the Executive Order 13650 to learn more about the EO actions DHS has implemented.
CFATS Monthly Statistics
DHS has received Top-Screen submissions from over 40,000 unique facilities. A unique facility is a facility that has submitted multiple Top-Screens, but is counted only once in this metric. Facilities may submit additional Top-Screens to reflect the changes in their chemical holdings and/or security posture.
After the Top-Screen submission, facilities determined to be high-risk and tiered go through the process of authorization and approval. Only about 3,500 of the over 40,000 facilities who submitted Top-Screens have been determined to be high-risk and are covered by the CFATS regulation.
CFATS Knowledge Center
The CFATS Knowledge Center is an online repository of frequently asked questions, articles, and the latest CFATS program news.
If you have additional questions, please call the CFATS Help Desk at 866-323-2957 Monday through Friday (except federal holidays) from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET).
For more information about the CFATS program, please contact CFATS@hq.dhs.gov.