EPA Issues Final Rules Under TSCA for Risk Evaluation and Prioritization of Chemicals

Toxic Substances and Person in Hazmat Suite

On July 20, 2017, EPA published two final rules in the federal register under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), 15 U.S.C. § 2601, as revised by the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, Pub. L. No. 114-182, 130 STAT. 448 (codified at 15 U.S.C. § 2601 (2016)). EPA also announced the availability of Guidance to Assist Interested Persons in Developing and Submitting Draft Risk Evaluations. 82 Fed. Reg. 33765 (July 20, 2017). The Lautenberg Act requires EPA to develop a program to evaluate chemical toxicity for substances used in commerce and provides for regulation of suitable chemicals pursuant to TSCA sections 5 and 6 to address risk. Regulation can come in the form of significant new use rules, consent orders, and limitations of manufacturing, processing, and use.

The rules amend 40 C.F.R. Part 701. Procedures for Chemical Risk Evaluation identifies criteria for High-Priority Substances and Low-Priority Substances subject to regulation. 82 Fed. Reg. 33439, 33726 (July 20, 2017) (RIN:2070-AK23). Chemical substances designated as High-Priority will be evaluated under Procedures for Prioritization of Chemicals for Risk Evaluation, established in the second rule, to determine whether the chemical presents an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment. 82 Fed. Reg. 33439, 33753 (July 20, 2017) (RIN:2070-AK20).

For more information on the Toxic Substances Control Act, contact your Environmental counsel at Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP.

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