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Toxic chemical releases decrease 18 percent in Indiana

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State and federal environmental officials say overall releases of toxic chemicals to the environment by companies in Indiana decreased in 2009 compared with the previous year.

The Times of Munster reports the 2009 Toxics Release Inventory released Thursday shows releases in Indiana decreased by 20.6 million pounds, or 18 percent.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency report finds Indiana's releases roughly divided between the manufacturing and electric industries. Manufacturing reduced releases by 19 percent and electric by about 13 percent.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management says the inventory has a limited scope and isn't "an effective indicator of environmental quality."

Federal officials require companies to report releases and transfers of about 650 chemicals and chemical categories at 20,000 facilities nationwide.

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