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Finalized TSCA Rules Met with Resistance

Thursday, August 17, 2017

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Last Friday (Aug. 11) the Environmental Protection Agency published its third and final Toxic Substance Control Act Framework rule, dictating the inventory notification requirements of retrospective chemical reporting.

Retro Reporting

As part of the revamp the TSCA received last year, chemical manufacturers and importers are now required to submit notifications to the EPA of chemicals on the TSCA Inventory that were manufactured or imported over a retrospective period of time.

© iStock.com / Antoine2K

Last Friday the Environmental Protection Agency published its third and final Toxic Substance Control Act Framework rule that dictates the inventory notification requirements of retrospective chemical reporting.

This final rule release details the period of time and gives deadlines for both manufacturers and processors.

The look-back period is detailed as June 21, 2006 to June 21, 2016. The submission period began Aug. 11 and manufacturers have until Feb. 7, 2018, while processors have until Oct. 5, 2018.

The EPA said in an emailed statement that it will be hosting webinars this fall to assist submitters and that details on those aids are forthcoming. The agency also published guidance materials on the TSCA section 8(a) Nanotechnology Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements Rule, which took effect on Monday (Aug. 14). These guidance documents provide information on submitted information on chemicals that are manufactured or processed at nanoscale.

More Battles

The previous two framework rules for the TSCA were finalized at the end of June, and had taken a step back from what the EPA had proposed in January, most notably in the “conditions of use” part of the risk evaluation section of the chemical categorization process.

In January, the proposed framework rule noted the risk evaluation of a chemical would look at all possible uses of a chemical, from how it’s manufactured, to how it’s disposed of, to possible accidental exposure.

© iStock.com / simarik

The previous two framework rules for the TSCA were finalized at the end of June, and had taken a step back from what the EPA had proposed in January, most notably in the “conditions of use” part of the risk evaluation section of the chemical categorization process.

However, the finalized rules set in place in June gave the agency authority to determine what uses to evaluate, saying, “… the final rule clarifies EPA’s authority to determine what uses of a chemical are appropriate for risk evaluation, ensuring that the Agency’s resources are focused on those uses that may pose the greatest risk.”

Court Petitions

Three petitions were filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit by a number of non-government organizations, including the Environmental Defense Fund, the Natural Resources Defense Council, Safe Chemicals and the United Steelworkers.

The petitions claim that the two framework rules are not in accordance with the law and demonstrate an excess of statutory jurisdiction.

"Just last year, Congress voted overwhelmingly to overhaul America’s chemical safety law to better protect the public from toxic chemicals," said Richard Denison, lead senior scientist at petitioning organization the Environmental Defense Fund. "Our legal challenges seek to hold EPA to the law and ensure that the public is protected as Congress intended."

The EPA has not released a statement regarding the petitions.

   

Tagged categories: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Government; Raw materials; Toxicity

Comment from Jesse Melton, (8/17/2017, 8:10 AM)

What is that guy doing with that pipette? Somebody should tell him they have machines for that. He's going to be the only person since the 19th Century to paralyze themselves by bending over like that all day.


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