Federal environmental regulators reported a 6 percent decline in toxic waste releases from industrial facilities in 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency's annual Toxics Release Inventory report added that airborne chemical releases declined by 4 percent compared to 2013 due to decreased emissions from chemical manufacturers and electric utilities.
Air releases were down more than 50 percent compared to 2003 levels.
The TRI report contains data submitted by industrial facilities in manufacturing, metal mining, utilities, commercial hazardous waste and other sectors. Facilities must disclose toxic chemical releases to the EPA by July 1 of each year, along with pollution prevention and waste management strategies related to those chemicals.
Those plants managed 25 billion pounds of toxic chemical waste in 2014. Of those, 84 percent was not released due to management practices such as recycling, treatment and energy recovery.
The remaining 16 percent was released into air, water or land disposal in accordance with regulations to limit human and environmental harm.
The 30th annual TRI report is available on its own dedicated website for the first time, and also includes new demographic information, federal facility and auto industry profiles and a forum for user feedback.