All Published Articles
On January 29, 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released two final Alternatives Assessment Reports for the flame retardant decabromodiphenyl ether (DecaBDE) and bisphenol A (BPA) in thermal paper. The EPA’s Design for the Environment (DfE) program developed the assessments, which profile the environmental and human health hazards for DecaBDE, BPA, and their alternatives. This article explains why these assessments are important.
On February 12, 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued, through a direct final rule, significant new use rules (SNUR) under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) for 35 chemical substances that were the subject of premanufacture notices (PMN). The 35 substances include four identified as multi-walled carbon nanotubes (generic) that were the subject of a December 3, 2012, TSCA Section 5(e) consent order.
The German Federal Environment Agency (UBA) has posted an English translation of a 2012 document entitled Concept for a European Register of Products Containing Nanomaterials. See http://www.umweltbundesamt.de/en/publikationen/concept-for-a-european-register-of-products The document states that, due to the particular uncertainties concerning evaluation of the possible risks of nanomaterials for human health and the environment, UBA supports the establishment of a European register of products containing nanomaterials as a precautionary measure.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently proposed revisions to the injury and illness reporting and recordkeeping requirements for employers. The proposal would increase workplace safety and health through improved tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses.
This “Compliance Advisor” column outlines thoughts on what might be headed our way in 2014 from the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Beyond the election-driven rhetoric, demands of the discrete issues that routinely come before program management will drive the EPA. An added and complicating concern may be the impact on these and all issues of continued budget cuts that challenge the EPA's ability to operate as it has in the past; even the simple ability to process approvals or conduct public meetings about non-controversial matters have become more difficult.
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) published on January 6, 2014, a report entitled Nanotechnologies -- Considerations for the development of chemical nomenclature for selected nano-objects (ISO/TR 14786:2014), which is intended to provide information and analyses in support of the development of chemical nomenclature for the naming of "nano-objects."
The EPA issued important guidance under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) on the regulatory status of commercial chemical products (CCP). This “Legal Lookout” column explains why the guidance is important, and explains it in more detail.
Biofuels have gotten all the press. But biobased chemicals have equal environmental and health potential, and also the most exposure under the Toxic Substances Control Act. Implications range from irritating to crippling, depending upon a manufacturer’s response.
In a game-changing bipartisan show of support for reform of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) that few saw coming, United States (US) Senators David Vitter (R-LA) and the late Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ)—among bipartisan others—introduced on May 22, 2013, the Chemical Safety Improvement Act (CSIA), later designated Senate Bill 1009 (S.1009). CSIA provides a new and streamlined approach to reforming TSCA that stakeholders may view favorably when compared to legislative templates that have been considered previously by the Senate and the House of Representatives. This Washington Watch column summarizes key aspects of the bill and identifies issues and areas where further clarification is needed. This summary is not meant to be exhaustive, but it illustrates some of the challenges that lie ahead for the legislation notwithstanding its initial burst of public and bipartisan support.
Most GHS adoptions will complete implementation by 2015, mandating that all mixtures must be classified according to the particular legislation of that jurisdiction. Although some variation will remain between labelling information and hazard category adoption, this greatly simplifies the process of classification and labelling for retail and consumer products. This level of harmonisation, together with the standardisation of transport labels, offers the promise of greatly simplifying and reducing the cost of label creation.