All Things Chemical™ Podcast

March 4, 2021
What’s happening with GHS and OSHA? — A Conversation with Karin Baron
This week I sat down with Karin Baron, Senior Regulatory Consultant to B&C and our affiliated consultancy, The Acta Group, to discuss the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS).  Listeners know GHS is the non-mandatory framework intended to aid in identifying, classifying, and communicating information on the hazards of chemicals or substances for occupational, consumer, and environmental exposures.  Despite the “harmonization” part in GHS, there continue to be significant areas of non-harmonization on a global scale that ... read more >
February 18, 2021
How will the New Administration affect the EPA? — A Conversation with James Aidala and Richard E. Engler, Ph.D.
This week, I sat down with Jim Aidala, Senior Government Affairs Consultant, and Dr. Richard Engler, Director of Chemistry, at B&C and its consulting affiliate, The Acta Group.  As both of these gentlemen previously worked at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, Jim as former Assistant Administrator of that office and Rich as a senior chemist and head of the Green Chemistry Division, each has a keen sense of how EPA prepares for and transitions to a new Administration.  After reviewing how a new Administration ... read more >
February 4, 2021
How will the Biden Administration Interpret Amended TSCA? — A Conversation with Richard E. Engler, Ph.D.
A change in Administration invites a sense of both excitement and anxiety.  Nowhere is this ambivalence more present that in the minds of regulated entities subject to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  After four years of the Trump Administration’s implementation of the many TSCA amendments occasioned by Lautenberg, regulated entities and other stakeholders have come to understand the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) interpretation of revised TSCA.  Not everyone agrees with these views, but they are known.  What is unclear is whether the ... read more >
January 21, 2021
One Last Conversation with EPA Assistant Administrator Alexandra Dunn
This week I had my final visit with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Assistant Administrator Alexandra Dunn.  As many of our listeners know, Alex Dunn lead the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention and was responsible for implementing the nation’s industrial and agricultural chemical laws, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), respectively.  Alex has done a superb job since taking office in early 2019, and her steady hand in managing TSCA implementation and a ... read more >
January 7, 2021
What Happened with the Presidential Election Last Year? — A Conversation with Howard Gutman
This week I sat down with my friend and colleague, Howard Gutman, who served as Ambassador to Belgium in the Obama Administration and is now a consultant for global businesses.  Ambassador Gutman addresses a broad range of timely and important topics, including the 2020 elections and what happened exactly, and what CEOs should be thinking about because of the change in Administration, both for U.S.-based and foreign-based businesses.  Given Ambassador Gutman’s unique view of global business, we also touch upon the European Union’s precautionary principle and ... read more >
December 17, 2020
Product Stewardship and Circular Economy — A Conversation with Kate Sellers
This week I was thrilled to sit down with Kate Sellers, Technical Director at ERM, where Kate leads multidisciplinary teams to help clients meet their business goals through product stewardship and sustainability initiatives.  Kate is immediate past President of the Product Stewardship Society and one of the country’s most visionary leaders in the area of product stewardship.  Kate counsels some of the largest companies in the world on optimizing business practices to producer better, safer products in a sustainable and efficient way.  I have known Kate for years, ... read more >
December 3, 2020
TSCA and Environmental Justice — A Conversation with Former OPPT Director Jeffery T. Morris, Ph.D.
This week I sat down with Dr. Jeff Morris, immediate past Director of EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT), the EPA office that regulates industrial chemicals.  Jeff is now a principal of Jeff Morris Solutions LLC, a consulting firm helping entities navigate the complexities of industrial chemical regulation.  While at EPA, Jeff directed the Agency’s implementation of the 2016 amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the U.S. law regulating industrial chemicals, and headed the office most immediately impacted by the significant ... read more >
November 12, 2020
Let’s talk about Europe — A Conversation with Bjorn Hansen, Executive Director of ECHA
This week, my colleague, Dr. Jane Vergnes, and I sat down with Bjorn Hansen, Executive Director of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA).  As our listeners may know, ECHA is the European Union (EU) regulatory agency charged with managing the scientific, technical, and administrative aspects of chemical management programs in the EU, including the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH), the Classification, Labeling, and Packaging Regulation (CLP), the Biocidal Products Regulation (BPR), the Prior Informed Consent Regulation (PIC), and a ... read more >
October 29, 2020
What’s Going on with the Brexit Transition Period? — A Conversation with Jane S. Vergnes, Ph.D.
This week, I sat down with Dr. Jane Vergnes, Director of Toxicology here at B&C and Vice President, Scientific Affairs, and Director of Toxicology at B&C’s consulting affiliate, The Acta Group.  Jane has lead responsibility for our United Kingdom (UK) and Brussels offices and has been deeply engaged in Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) and the impact of Brexit on our European Union (EU), UK, and U.S. clients. Given the fast approaching end of the transition period between the UK and EU, I thought it would be timely to ... read more >
October 15, 2020
How EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs Is Handling COVID-19 -- A Conversation with Lisa Campbell
This week, I sat down with Lisa Campbell, my Partner here at Bergeson & Campbell (B&C®) and its consulting affiliate, The Acta Group (Acta®), and a well-recognized expert on all things regulated under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).  With so much attention focused on registering new products to combat COVID-19, we thought it timely to check in again with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) and see what it is up to.  OPP has been extraordinarily busy since March keeping up with new products ... read more >
October 1, 2020
EPA and the Election — A Conversation with Jim Aidala
This week, I sat down with Jim Aidala, Senior Government Affairs Consultant at B&C and its consulting affiliate, The Acta Group.  As a former Assistant Administrator in what is now the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, Jim has a keen sense of how EPA prepares for and transitions to changes in Administrations.  As we prepare for the November elections, we thought it would be good to check-in with Jim and get a sense of how our colleagues at EPA are faring.  After reviewing key topics in the pesticide ... read more >
September 17, 2020
A NanoBCA Retrospective — A Conversation with Vincent Caprio
This week I sat down with Vincent Caprio, Founder and Executive Director of the NanoBusiness Commercialization Association (NanoBCA).  Vince has been on the forefront of nano innovations and optimizing opportunities for businesses to commercialize their nano creations for more than two decades.  In founding the NanoBCA, Vince has placed it at the center of nanotechnology commercialization, national policy, law, and business since the beginning of the public’s focus on nanotechnology.  NanoBCA has provided a much-needed spotlight on how nanotechnology has been a critical ... read more >
September 3, 2020
Pesticide Registration in a Pandemic — A Conversation with Sheryl Dolan
This week I sat down with Sheryl Lindros Dolan, Senior Regulatory Consultant at B&C and its consulting affiliate, The Acta Group.  Sheryl is on the front line of pesticide registration and engages in a remarkably diverse range of pesticides and pesticide devices.  Sheryl is particularly gifted at charting regulatory strategies for new and novel pesticide innovations and other agricultural chemical products like biostimulants, biopesticides, and other chemical products.  Sheryl’s training as a scientist and a lawyer is invaluable in guiding clients to obtaining ... read more >
August 19, 2020
Implementing Lautenberg — A Conversation with former OPPT Director Jeffery T. Morris, Ph.D.
This week I sat down with Dr. Jeff Morris, immediate past Director of EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT), the EPA office that regulates the industrial chemical sector.  Jeff directed EPA’s implementation of the 2016 amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and headed the office most immediately impacted by the significant changes brought about by the Lautenberg amendments. In our discussion, we talk about how Jeff and his OPPT colleagues managed the daunting task of implementing a new law, and how the Agency has fared since the law’s ... read more >
August 6, 2020
What’s going on at EPA right now? — A Conversation with Richard E. Engler, Ph.D.
This week I sat down with Richard E. Engler, Ph.D., B&C’s Director of Chemistry, and all-around TSCA savant. Rich is an organic chemist and a 17-year veteran with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, where Rich managed the Green Chemistry Program and reviewed some 10,000 new chemical notifications. Given all that is going on at EPA with implementing the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which extensively amended the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), Rich and I discussed a wide range of ... read more >
July 23, 2020
A TSCA Retrospective — A Conversation with Congressman John M. Shimkus
This week I sat down with Congressman John M. Shimkus, a Member of the United States House of Representatives for the 15th District of Illinois.  As listeners of the podcast know well, Congressman Shimkus is a senior Member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.  In this capacity, Congressman Shimkus has become a rock star in the industrial chemical community, given his tireless efforts to modernize the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) , which of course resulted in passage four years ago of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act ... read more >
July 9, 2020
Checking up on EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs — A Conversation with Jim Aidala
This week I sat down with James Aidala, B&C’s Senior Government Affairs Consultant, to catch up on what the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) is up to and to get a sense of what we might expect to develop over the remainder of the year.  As a former Assistant Administrator of what is now the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, Jim’s thoughts and analyses are always spot on. We discuss leadership within OPP, which is transitioning.  Not surprisingly, who holds the position of Office Director is ... read more >
June 25, 2020
TSCA at Four — A Conversation with Alexandra Dunn, OCSPP AA
This week I sat down with EPA Assistant Administrator Alexandra Dunn.  As many of our listeners know, Alex Dunn heads the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention and is responsible for implementing the nation’s industrial and agricultural chemical laws, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), respectively. Alex has an extensive background in the environmental field and is a leading voice on TSCA and FIFRA.  Prior to Alex’s current role, she served as the Regional Administrator for EPA Region ... read more >
June 11, 2020
TSCA at Four — A Conversation with Richard E. Engler, Ph.D.
As we are now into June, Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) aficionados will be quick to note that “new TSCA” is now almost four years old.  Passage in June 2016 of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act occasioned EPA’s implementation of a law that has transformed industrial chemical regulation in the United States.  This week, to mark Lautenberg’s fourth birthday, I sat down with Dr. Richard E. Engler, B&C’s Director of Chemistry and all-around expert on all things TSCA, to look back on what EPA stakeholders have ... read more >
May 28, 2020
Back to Work Safely—A Conversation with Larry Sloan, CEO of the AIHA
This week, as employees around the country are returning to their offices and work stations, I was excited to visit with Larry Sloan, CEO of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), located here in the Washington, D.C., area. AIHA may not be a well-known organization to many of our listeners, but that could be about to change.  Founded in 1939, AIHA is a non-profit organization serving professionals dedicated to the identification, evaluation, control, and confirmation of environmental stressors in or arising from the workplace. Given AIHA’s extraordinary institutional ... read more >
May 14, 2020
What Is the Difference between a Biostimulant and a Pesticide?
The question posed by this podcast may sound easy, but it is anything but. This podcast explores the fascinating yet commercially vexing jurisdictional divide between and among biostimulants, biopesticides, and fertilizers as each of these agricultural chemical products is vital to the agricultural community.  According to a recent U.S. Department of Agriculture report, the plant biostimulant industry alone is expected to be at least a $2.2 billion global market, swelling to $5 billion in 2025. As big as this market is, there is surprisingly a great deal of confusion in markets globally ... read more >
April 30, 2020
EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs and COVID-19 — A Conversation with Richard Keigwin
This week, I was thrilled to sit down with Richard Keigwin, Director of the Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) here in Washington, D.C.  As OPP Director, Rick leads the EPA office that reviews and approves pesticide products used to combat the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.  Historically, OPP has consistently been one of the busiest offices in EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP).  The pandemic has invited a virtual flood of interest in the next generation of ... read more >
April 16, 2020
Chemical Distribution in the Time of COVID-19 — A Conversation with Eric R. Byer, NACD
This week, I sat down with Eric Byer, President and CEO of the National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD). Eric, like many of us these days, is working hard and under extraordinary circumstances ensuring that his member companies are able to continue to distribute much needed chemical products, including sanitizers and other cleaning products, in response to the pandemic.  Our conversation focused on these uniquely “in the moment” issues and a broad range of federal, state, and international issues on which NACD is focused, including extending the Chemical ... read more >
April 2, 2020
COVID-19, FIFRA, and EPA — A Conversation with Lisa Campbell
This week, I sat down with Lisa Campbell, my business partner of many years and one of the nation’s foremost legal experts on the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Given Lisa’s expertise, we engaged in a very timely discussion about the approval by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of products under FIFRA to combat COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.  EPA has been deluged with applications to approve new products and/or new uses of existing products to combat the virus.  Lisa explains how antimicrobial pesticide ... read more >
March 19, 2020
EU Classification, Labeling, and Packaging Legislation — A Conversation with Karin Baron
This week, I sat down with my colleague Karin Baron, a senior regulatory consultant here at B&C. In this conversation, Karin talks about recent European Union enforcement initiatives that have to do with the CLP legislation: Classification, Labeling, and Packaging legislation. Karin begins by telling us about the current state of harmonization along the lines of the GHS model, and how this might be more an aspiration than a reality. Then we talk about the history of the CLP legislation: how it was introduced, how it has changed over the years, and what recent changes are doing to bring ... read more >
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