Businesses Should Know These 7 Facts About the Reformed Toxic Substances Control Act

Congress recently approved major reforms to the Toxic Substances Control Act.  The last time lawmakers made changes to the TSCA was back in 1976.  However, in response to many chemical disasters, lawmakers were pressed to enforce stricter rules and regulations.

Toxic SubstancesWho does this affect?Under the former version of the TSCA, chemical producers, distributors and importers were held liable for compliance.  Now, manufacturers who mix chemicals into their own sellable products will have to comply with TSCA.  Products included range from auto parts and electronics to soaps and beauty care products.

Here are seven things you should know:

  1. The EPA has 12 months to identify 10 untested chemicals for safety assessments. These chemicals must also be high-risk.
  2. Within the next seven years, the EPA can pick 20 chemicals that require further testing and analysis.
  3. The EPA only has to consider health and environmental effects of chemicals when writing regulations, not any costs associated.
  4. Future chemical regulations will take priority over any state restrictions put in place after April 21, 2016.
  5. The EPA is required to develop risk management rules for classes of chemicals and must have performed 20 risk evaluations within three years.
  6. Industry is expected to pay annual user fees to cover the EPA’s expenses associated with this reform.
  7. EPA will now be able to  share information regarding chemicals with state and local governments, first responders, and health providers.  There are guidelines that states what information can and cannot be claimed as confidential.

Additionally, the EPA can now label new chemicals as “unreasonable risk”, “may pose risks” and “no unreasonable risk.”  Previously, the EPA had up to 90 days to decide if a new chemical presents “unreasonable risk” after a pre-manufacture notice is given.

If you have questions about chemical compliance, contact an SRP Environmental Consultant today.  Call us at (318) 222-2364 or visit us online.  We have seven convenient locations in Charlotte, Dallas, Denver, Honolulu, Midland, Shreveport and Pittsburgh.