Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) is a Washington, D.C. law firm providing chemical and chemical product stakeholders unparalleled experience, judgment, and excellence in matters relating to TSCA, and other global chemical management programs.

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on January 15, 2020, that it is partnering with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and Physicians for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) to host public webinars on various topics related to reducing, refining, or replacing vertebrate animal testing.  A webinar will be held on January 22, 2020, covering the use and application of the Collaborative Acute Toxicity Modeling Suite (CATMoS), a free resource for screening organic chemicals for acute oral toxicity.  Drs. Nicole Kleinstreuer and Kamel Mansouri will discuss the development of and demonstrate CATMoS, which was developed during a project in which the National Toxicology Program (NTP) Interagency Center for the Evaluation of Alternative Toxicological Methods (NICEATM) and the EPA National Center for Computational Toxicology (NCCT) collected a large body of rat oral acute toxicity data and made these data available to project participants.  Participants built several models that were then used to generate consensus predictions for the acute oral toxicity endpoints of interest to regulatory agencies.  The webinar will offer a walk-through of how to use the modeling suite to generate acute oral toxicity predictions for chemicals of interest.  EPA notes that it “does not necessarily endorse the views of the speakers.”


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgated a final rule on January 13, 2020, to adjust the level of the maximum (and minimum) statutory civil monetary penalty amounts under the statutes it administers, including the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  85 Fed. Reg. 1751.  EPA states that this action is mandated by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended through the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (the 2015 Act).  The 2015 Act prescribes a formula for annually adjusting the statutory maximum (and minimum) amount of civil penalties to reflect inflation, maintain the deterrent effect of statutory civil penalties, and promote compliance with the law.  EPA notes that the rule does not necessarily revise the penalty amounts that it chooses to seek pursuant to its civil penalty policies in a particular case.  EPA’s civil penalty policies, which guide enforcement personnel on how to exercise EPA’s statutory penalty authorities, take into account a number of fact-specific considerations, e.g., the seriousness of the violation, the violator’s good faith efforts to comply, any economic benefit gained by the violator as a result of its noncompliance, and a violator’s ability to pay.  The final rule was effective January 13, 2020.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton

Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) and its consulting affiliate The Acta Group (Acta®) published on January 9, 2020, our “Forecast for U.S. Federal and International Chemical Regulatory Policy 2020.”  In this richly detailed and comprehensive document, the legal, scientific, and regulatory professionals of B&C and Acta distill key trends in U.S. and global chemical law and policy, and provide our best informed judgment as to the shape of key developments we are likely to see in the New Year.  The document includes a list of B&C speeches and writings, as well as a list of B&C webinars and podcasts available on demand.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
As reported in our December 20, 2019, blog item, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released on December 20, 2019, an updated version of the “Working Approach” document that builds upon EPA’s November 2017 “New Chemicals Decision-Making Framework:  Working Approach to Making Determinations under Section 5 of TSCA.”  On January 2, 2020, EPA published a Federal Register notice announcing the availability of the updated document and beginning a 45-day comment period.  85 Fed. Reg. 99.  Comments are due February 18, 2020.
 
The updated document explains its approach for making one of the five affirmative determinations on new chemical notices under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA):

  • The chemical or significant new use presents an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;
  • Available information is insufficient to allow EPA to make a reasoned evaluation of the health and environmental effects associated with the chemical or significant new use;
  • In the absence of sufficient information, the chemical or significant new use may present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;
  • The chemical is or will be produced in substantial quantities and either enters or may enter the environment in substantial quantities or there is or may be significant or substantial exposure to the chemical; or
  • The chemical or significant new use is not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment.

EPA notes that the updated document reflects feedback from a 2017 public meeting and comment period and EPA’s additional experience implementing the 2016 amendments to TSCA Section 5, and includes:

  • Additional clarification and detail throughout;
  • General guiding principles and concepts for making determinations;
  • Decision-making logic and key questions that EPA must address; and
  • Example applications of the Working Approach to reach each of the affirmative determinations under TSCA Section 5(a)(3).

EPA has posted a document summarizing public comments received on the 2017 document and its responses.  More information is available in our December 20, 2019, memorandum, “EPA Releases Updated Version of ‘Working Approach’ Document for New Chemicals Review.”


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton

Kevin L. Bromberg, Assistant Chief Counsel for Environmental Policy for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of Advocacy, will retire from federal service on January 3, 2020.  Bromberg served two terms in the Office of Advocacy, from 1979 to 1991 and from 1994 to the present.  Prior to rejoining the Office of Advocacy in 1994, Bromberg represented small business trade associations in regulatory matters dealing with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  He was counsel for the Small Business Coalition for a Responsible Toxic Release Inventory and executive director of the Industry Coalition for a Workable Clean Air Program.  Bromberg founded the first Advocacy Roundtable, the Environmental Roundtable, in 1990.  He is the primary author of three petitions for regulatory relief to EPA, all of which EPA granted.  Bromberg has also worked for EPA and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Bromberg was instrumental in developing the procedures for implementation of EPA panels under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) and has represented the Office of Advocacy in more than 30 EPA SBREFA panels.

Kevin will be sorely missed.  He has been a relentless and exceedingly effective advocate for small business for decades.  Kevin’s zealous pursuit of the facts -- scientific, economic, and otherwise -- and his impressive and creative legal advocacy have served businesses well.  Kevin’s tireless advocacy and efforts to enhance regulatory transparency, most visibly apparent in forming the Environmental Roundtable, have made Kevin one of the most respected, effective, and dedicated attorneys of his time.  Thanks for all you have contributed, Kevin, and our best to you in your new endeavors.

Tags: SBA, SBREFA

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published on December 20, 2019, the final list of high-priority chemicals.  These chemicals will be the next 20 chemicals to undergo risk evaluation under the amended Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  According to EPA, issuing the final list of high-priority chemicals for risk evaluation “represents the final step in the prioritization process outlined in TSCA and marks another major TSCA milestone for EPA in its efforts to ensure the safety of existing chemicals in the marketplace.”  The 20 chemicals consist of seven chlorinated solvents, six phthalates, four flame retardants, formaldehyde, a fragrance additive, and a polymer precursor:

  1. p-Dichlorobenzene;
  2. 1,2-Dichloroethane;
  3. trans-1,2- Dichloroethylene;
  4. o-Dichlorobenzene;
  5. 1,1,2-Trichloroethane;
  6. 1,2-Dichloropropane;
  7. 1,1-Dichloroethane;
  8. Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) (1,2-Benzene- dicarboxylic acid, 1,2- dibutyl ester);
  9. Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP) - 1,2-Benzene- dicarboxylic acid, 1- butyl 2(phenylmethyl) ester;
  10. Di-ethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) - (1,2-Benzene- dicarboxylic acid, 1,2- bis(2-ethylhexyl) ester);
  11. Di-isobutyl phthalate (DIBP) - (1,2-Benzene- dicarboxylic acid, 1,2- bis-(2methylpropyl) ester);
  12. Dicyclohexyl phthalate;
  13. 4,4'-(1-Methylethylidene)bis[2, 6-dibromophenol] (TBBPA);
  14. Tris(2-chloroethyl) phosphate (TCEP);
  15. Phosphoric acid, triphenyl ester (TPP);
  16. Ethylene dibromide;
  17. 1,3-Butadiene;
  18. 1,3,4,6,7,8-Hexahydro-4,6,6,7,8,8-hexamethylcyclopenta [g]-2-benzopyran (HHCB);
  19. Formaldehyde; and
  20. Phthalic anhydride.

More information will be available in a forthcoming memorandum that will be posted on our website.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released on December 20, 2019, an updated version of the “Working Approach” document that builds upon EPA’s November 2017 “New Chemicals Decision-Making Framework:  Working Approach to Making Determinations under Section 5 of TSCA.”  EPA discussed the updated document, “TSCA New Chemical Determinations:  A Working Approach for Making Determinations under TSCA Section 5,” at a public meeting on December 10, 2019.  EPA states that the updated document explains its approach for making one of the five affirmative determinations on new chemical notices under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA):

  • The chemical or significant new use presents an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;
  • Available information is insufficient to allow EPA to make a reasoned evaluation of the health and environmental effects associated with the chemical or significant new use;
  • In the absence of sufficient information, the chemical or significant new use may present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;
  • The chemical is or will be produced in substantial quantities and either enters or may enter the environment in substantial quantities or there is or may be significant or substantial exposure to the chemical; or
  • The chemical or significant new use is not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment.

EPA notes that the updated document reflects feedback from a 2017 public meeting and comment period and EPA’s additional experience implementing the 2016 amendments to TSCA Section 5, and includes:

  • Additional clarification and detail throughout;
  • General guiding principles and concepts for making determinations;
  • Decision-making logic and key questions that EPA must address; and
  • Example applications of the Working Approach to reach each of the affirmative determinations under TSCA Section 5(a)(3).

EPA has posted a document summarizing public comments received on the 2017 document and its responses.  Upon publication in the Federal Register, EPA will accept comment on the updated document for 45 days in docket EPA-HQ-OPPT-2019-0684 at https://www.regulations.gov.  More information will be available in a forthcoming memorandum that will be posted on our website.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on December 18, 2019, that it is extending the public comment period for the draft risk evaluation of N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP) to give stakeholders more time to review and comment on the draft document.  Comments are now due January 21, 2020.  EPA states that it will use feedback received from the public comment process, along with input from the Science Advisory Committee on Chemicals (SACC), to inform the final risk evaluation for NMP.  If the final risk evaluation for NMP finds there are unreasonable risks under any of the specific conditions of use, EPA will propose actions to address those risks within the timeframe required by the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  EPA notes that these actions could include proposed regulations to prohibit or limit the manufacture, processing, distribution in the marketplace, use, or disposal of this chemical, as applicable.  EPA will publish a Federal Register notice announcing the comment period extension.  More information on the draft risk evaluation is available in our November 5, 2019, memorandum, “EPA Releases Draft Risk Evaluation for NMP, Schedules SACC Review for December.”


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
On December 19, 2019, from 2:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. (EST), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will host a conference call to review certain provisions of the final rule on fees for the administration of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  EPA states that it will provide a brief overview of the fees associated with an EPA-initiated risk evaluation, the creation of the preliminary list that identifies manufacturers and importers subject to fees, and how it divides fees among the identified businesses.  Questions should be submitted in advance to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).   The call-in number is (877) 317-0679, and the conference code is 1480769.  More information on EPA’s 2018 final rule is available in our September 28, 2018, memorandum, “EPA Issues Final TSCA Fees Rule.”

Tags: CBI, Fees

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on December 13, 2019, that it contracted the National Academies of Science (NAS) to conduct a peer review of its Application of Systematic Review in TSCA Risk Evaluations.  According to EPA, this review will help provide it with important feedback on its approach to selecting and reviewing the scientific studies that are used to inform Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) risk evaluations.  EPA states that “[‌i]ntegrating systematic review principles into the TSCA risk evaluation process is critical to developing transparent, reproducible and scientifically credible risk evaluations.”  EPA will provide NAS with the document published in June 2018, “as well as additional publicly available information” that can inform its review, including previously received public comments on this method.  NAS will use their study process to conduct an objective and independent peer review, including convening a public meeting and issuing a final report, by June 2020.  EPA notes that it will continue its work on the risk evaluations currently underway using the established systematic review process.  EPA will incorporate NAS’s recommendations “as appropriate into our systematic review methods and use the updated process in future risk evaluations as timing allows.”


 
 1 2 3 >  Last ›