March 9, 2010

DOT Eases Requirements for Security Plans

Today the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued a final rule narrowing the list of hazardous materials (hazmats) that require security plans when transported in commerce. 75 Fed. Reg. 10974. The rule is effective on October 1, 2010, although voluntary compliance is authorized as of April 8, 2010. The final rule also revises the regulations applicable to the content of and training associated with security...
March 4, 2010

House Subcommittee Holds Hearing on TSCA and PBTs

On March 4, 2010, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a hearing entitled “TSCA and Persistent, Bioaccumulative, and Toxic Chemicals: Examining Domestic and International Actions.” The Subcommittee held the hearing to examine U.S. and international efforts to protect public health and the environment from persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals, how the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is currently...
March 3, 2010

Health Canada Adopts Interim Policy Statement on Health Canada’s Working Definition for Nanomaterials

On March 1, 2010, Health Canada began a public consultation on its adoption of the Interim Policy Statement on Health Canada’s Working Definition for Nanomaterials (Interim Policy). Although Health Canada is accepting comments, it states that the Interim Policy “is effective immediately.” In preparing the Interim Policy, Health Canada states that it sought the informal feedback of some international stakeholders, industry trade groups, standards associations, and...
March 1, 2010

House Subcommittee Holds Hearing on Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals in Drinking Water

On February 25, 2010, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Environment held a hearing entitled “Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals in Drinking Water: Risks to Human Health and the Environment.” The Subcommittee intended the hearing to examine the science and regulation of endocrine disruptors that may be found in sources of drinking water. Witnesses included: The witness testimony is available online. Subcommittee members criticized the slow pace of...
February 24, 2010

EPA Publishes Final Clarification for Chemical Identification Describing Activated Phosphors for TSCA Inventory Purposes

Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its final clarification under which certain activated phosphors that are not on the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Section 8(b) Chemical Substance Inventory (TSCA Inventory) will be considered to be “new” chemical substances under TSCA Section 5, and thus will be subject to applicable notification requirements under TSCA Section 5. According to EPA, the clarification is necessary because EPA’s statements in...
February 23, 2010

OIG Report Concludes EPA Needs Coordinated Plan to Oversee Its TSCA Responsibilities

On February 18, 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a report entitled EPA Needs a Coordinated Plan to Oversee Its Toxic Substances Control Act Responsibilities, urging EPA to coordinate better risk assessment and oversight activities by establishing a management plan that contains new goals and measures that demonstrate the results of Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) and Office of Enforcement and Compliance...
February 22, 2010

EPA Proposes Amendments to TSCA Section 4 Enforceable Consent Agreement Procedures

On February 19, 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed important revisions to the procedures for development of enforceable consent agreements (ECA) to generate test data under Section 4 of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). 75 Fed. Reg. 7428 (Feb. 19, 2010). The proposed rule includes some sweeping changes for when and how negotiations will be initiated, conducted, and concluded, and limits the timeframe within which these activities will take place. Companies that...
February 17, 2010

New York Advisory Council Green Procurement Chemical Avoidance List Released Publicly

As we reported last month, the Sustainability and Green Procurement Advisory Council (Advisory Council) of the New York Interagency Committee on Sustainability and Green Procurement (Interagency Committee) voted 9-1 to recommend creating a “chemical avoidance list” that would be a list of chemicals that New York government agencies should avoid buying. The list would comply with Governor David Paterson’s 2008 Executive Order directing state agencies, public authorities, and...
February 8, 2010

EPA SAP Releases Report on Nanosilver and Other Nanometal Pesticide Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) has released the minutes of its November 3-5, 2009, meeting regarding evaluation of the hazard and exposure associated with nanosilver and other nanometal pesticide products. Before summarizing the SAP’s primary conclusions and recommendations, we note a few general observations. First, the SAP final recommendations address nanosilver almost entirely, and little or no mention is made of “nanometal...
February 4, 2010

Senate Subcommittee Holds Hearing Regarding Current Science on Public Exposure to Toxic Chemicals

Today the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Superfund, Toxics and Environmental Health held a hearing entitled “Current Science on Public Exposures to Toxic Chemicals.” Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), Chair of the Subcommittee, criticized the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) for failing to provide the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the necessary authority to protect the public from unsafe chemicals. Lautenberg stated that he intends...