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.

On June 24, 2020, Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®), The Environmental Law Institute (ELI), and the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health presented “TSCA Reform -- Four Years Later.”  A full recording of the seminar, including a keynote address by Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, Assistant Administrator, Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and comments by the Hon. John Shimkus U.S. Representative, 15th District of Illinois, is available to watch now.
 
This complimentary all-day virtual seminar marked the fourth Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Annual Conference, with top EPA officials and industry leaders reflecting on the accomplishments and challenges since the implementation of the 2016 Lautenberg Amendments and where TSCA stands today. Panelists covered “TSCA Implementation: Where Are We Now?,” “Science Policy Issues,” and “Regulatory and Policy Issues” while offering unique insights into the decision-making process of EPA.
 
Building on the timely information shared during this event, B&C’s All Things Chemical ™ podcast has released an exclusive interview with Alexandra Dunn focusing on the current state of TSCA, “TSCA at Four — A Conversation with Alexandra Dunn, OCSPP AA.” Lynn L. Bergeson and Alexandra Dunn focused their discussion on the implementation of the amendments to TSCA, which Congress enacted in 2016.  As pollution prevention is an integral part of EPA’s mission, this episode also focuses on initiatives under way to introduce safer and greener chemicals.  Finally, the discussion includes a look ahead to what is on EPA’s agenda for the remainder of the year, which promises to be extraordinarily busy.


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
On June 24, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a New Approach Methods (NAM) Work Plan that will “serve[] as a roadmap for meeting its animal testing reduction goals set forth in Administrator Andrew Wheeler’s 2019 Directive.”  According to EPA’s June 24, 2020, press release, the Work Plan describes how EPA plans to develop, test, and apply chemical safety testing approaches that reduce or replace the use of animals.  EPA states that compared to traditional animal testing, NAMs allow researchers better to predict potential hazards for risk assessment purposes without the use of traditional methods that rely on animal testing.  The objectives of the Work Plan include:

  • Evaluating regulatory flexibility for the use of NAMs;
     
  • Establishing baselines and metrics for assessing progress;
     
  • Developing NAMs that fill critical information gaps;
     
  • Establishing scientific confidence in NAMs;
     
  • Demonstrating NAMs application to regulatory decisions; and
     
  • Engaging with stakeholders to incorporates their knowledge and address their concerns regarding EPA’s phaseout of mammalian testing.

EPA states that the Work Plan will evolve as EPA’s knowledge and experience grow and as outside experts offer their perspectives and contributions.  EPA will regularly review the Work Plan to ensure that the efforts involved provide the best path to success.  More information on the 2019 directive to prioritize efforts to reduce animal testing is available in our September 11, 2019, blog item, “EPA Administrator Signs Directive Intended to Reduce Animal Testing, Awards $4.25 Million for Research on Alternative Methods to Animal Testing.”
 


 

This week's All Things Chemical™ Podcast will be of interest to readers of the TSCAblog™. A brief description of the episode written by Lynn L. Bergeson is below.

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 1, and before Region 1, Alex served as the executive director and general counsel for the Environmental Council of States.  She has published extensively in the areas of the ethics of community advocacy, environmental justice, urban sustainability, water quality, cooperative federalism, the Clean Water Act, and more.

Given Alex’s high profile role at EPA, we focused our discussion on implementation of the amendments to TSCA, which Congress enacted in 2016.  As we record this session, we are at the four-year anniversary of the new law, and we celebrate EPA’s many accomplishments in implementing the Congressionally mandated changes to the law.  As pollution prevention is an integral part of EPA’s mission, we also focus on initiatives under way to introduce safer and greener chemicals.  Finally, our discussion includes a look ahead to what is on EPA’s agenda for the remainder of the year, which promises to be extraordinarily busy.

ALL MATERIALS IN THIS PODCAST ARE PROVIDED SOLELY FOR INFORMATIONAL  AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES. THE MATERIALS ARE NOT INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR THE PROVISION OF LEGAL SERVICES. ALL LEGAL QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED DIRECTLY BY A LICENSED ATTORNEY PRACTICING IN THE APPLICABLE AREA OF LAW.

©2020 Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.  All Rights Reserve


 

This week's All Things Chemical™ Podcast will be of interest to readers of the TSCAblog™. A brief description of the episode written by Lynn L. Bergeson is below.

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 achieved over the past four years, and to look forward to what to expect the remainder of this year and beyond.  We address the progress EPA has made in reviewing new chemical innovations, regulating existing industrial chemicals, what early challenges have been resolved, and a few of the frustrations that linger.  As a 17-year veteran of EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics and now an extremely busy and tops in his field private consultant, Rich knows TSCA from both sides, and his insights are always spot on.

Rich is a Ph.D. chemist who focuses here at B&C and our consulting affiliate, The Acta Group (Acta®), on all aspects of TSCA regulation and science policy.  In addition to his duties as a top chemist at EPA, Rich also headed EPA’s Green Chemistry Program.  Rich has reviewed more than 10,000 chemical notifications under TSCA and now is an indispensable part of our deep TSCA bench here at B&C and Acta.

ALL MATERIALS IN THIS PODCAST ARE PROVIDED SOLELY FOR INFORMATIONAL  AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES. THE MATERIALS ARE NOT INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR THE PROVISION OF LEGAL SERVICES. ALL LEGAL QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED DIRECTLY BY A LICENSED ATTORNEY PRACTICING IN THE APPLICABLE AREA OF LAW.


 
 
A virtual day-long symposium presented by the Environmental Law Institute (ELI), Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®), and the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health
 

Free and Open to the Public
Wednesday, June 24, 2020
9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (EDT)
 
 
B&C, ELI, and the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health are pleased to present "TSCA Reform -- Four Years Later."  This complimentary virtual conference marks the fourth Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Annual Conference, reflecting on the accomplishments and challenges since the implementation of the 2016 Lautenberg Amendments and where TSCA stands today. Panelists will cover "TSCA Implementation: Where Are We Now?," "Science Policy Issues," and "Regulatory and Policy Issues" while offering unique insights into the decision making process of top U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials.  
 
Speakers include:
Panelists will dive into a host of topics, including the current impacts of TSCA on science policies, challenges faced by industry, and regulatory policies, especially those concerning ensuring compliance and enforcement. Mark your calendar to join ELI, B&C, the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, leading experts, and distinguished keynote speakers in a day-long exploration of the issues and regulations surrounding TSCA.

More information about "TSCA Reform -- Four Years Later" is available at the ELI website. A recording of last year's TSCA Reform seminar can be accessed online with a free ELI account, providing a clear example of how this seminar translates to a virtual space. 

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Christopher R. Blunck
 
One of several changes to the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) Rule, issued in final on April 9, 2020, is that in the 2020 cycle, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has changed the way that toll manufacturing must be reported.  In this cycle, EPA will not accept reporting from only the contracting manufacturer in situations where a company contracts with another company (i.e., a toll manufacturer) for the production of chemicals.  As in years’ past, EPA states in its final rule that if no report is filed, both the contracting and producing companies will be held liable if no reporting occurs.  Under past CDR cycles, EPA would accept reporting from either the contracting manufacturer or the producing (formerly referred to as “toll”) manufacturer.  In 2020, EPA has stated in multiple fora that for the 2020 reporting period, EPA will only accept manufacturing details from the actual producers, even if manufacturing was contracted by another company. This change may come as a surprise, especially to producing companies that heretofore may not have reported under the CDR Rule and instead relied on the contracting company to do so.

EPA stated in the preamble to the final CDR rule that it chose to include two different reporting methodologies for a co-manufacturing situation, indicating that the methodologies are based on a desire to reduce reporting burden and maintain flexibility for both the contracting and producing company.  EPA noted that the companies must work together to select between the methodologies for preparing their CDR methodologies.  The two methodologies for reporting, codified at 40 C.F.R. Section 711.22(c), are:

(1) The contracting company initiates the required report for that site [defined by EPA at 40 C.F.R. §711.3 as the location where the chemical substance is physically manufactured for chemical substances co-manufactured] as the primary submitter. The contracting company must indicate on the report that this is a co-manufacturing situation, notify the producing company, and record the production volume domestically co-manufactured as set forth in §711.15(b)(3) and processing and use information set forth in §711.15(b)(4). Upon notification by the contracting company, the producing company must also record the production volume domestically co-manufactured and complete the rest of the report as prompted by e-CDRweb.
(2) Upon written agreement between the contracting company and the producing company, the producing company completes the full report for the co-manufactured chemical. The contracting company supplies the information not otherwise known to or reasonably ascertainable by the producing company.
 

In both cases, the producing company (toll manufacturer) must provide the manufacturing details.  There is no mechanism for the contracting company to submit the entire Form U.
 
More information on the final CDR rule is available in our March 19, 2020, memorandum, “EPA Releases Final Amendments to CDR Rule, Extends Reporting Period.”

Tags: CDR, Reporting

 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on April 29, 2020, that is seeking applications from states, federally-recognized tribes, Native American organizations, and non-governmental organizations (NGO) to provide technical support for the National Tribal Toxics Council (NTTC).  The NTTC works collaboratively with EPA to represent tribal interests in the development and implementation of chemical risk assessment, risk management, and pollution prevention programs.  EPA states that it anticipates awarding one cooperative agreement for approximately $800,000 over a five-year period that will focus on the following activities:

  • Assist federally-recognized tribes, Alaska Native Villages, and intertribal organizations in selecting and maintaining a geographically diverse membership with a diversity of relevant and technical expertise in the NTTC;
  • Assist the NTTC in maintaining a viable charter that covers activities eligible for EPA funding and fulfilling the objectives of that charter; and
  • Provide professional and technical support to the NTTC to conduct its meetings and other activities.

Applications are due June 15, 2020.

Tags: NTTC, Funding

 

Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) is pleased to release a timely episode of the All Things Chemical™ podcast, “Chemical Distribution in the Time of COVID-19 — A Conversation with Eric R. Byer, NACD.” In this episode, Lynn L. Bergeson, Managing Partner, B&C, and Eric Byer, President and CEO of the National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD), sat down to discuss current challenges facing small and large chemical distributors, and how NACD member companies are able to continue to distribute much needed chemical products, including sanitizers and other cleaning products, in response to the pandemic.

Lynn and Eric’s conversation focuses on unique “in the moment” issues and a broad range of federal, state, and international issues on which NACD is focused, including extending the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program, Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) implementation initiatives, and the impact of tariffs on imports from China on NACD member companies.  Eric is an amazing leader of an essential trade association, and this conversation provides insights into his success as President and CEO of NACD.

The full podcast episode is available to stream online, where listeners can also find the recent podcast “COVID-19, FIFRA, and EPA — A Conversation with Lisa Campbell”  Additional updates on chemical regulatory activity related to COVID-19 can be found on B&C’s Pesticide Law and Policy Blog® and on the Regulatory Developments page of B&C's website, including these recent updates:

All Things Chemical™ engages listeners in intelligent, insightful conversation about everything related to industrial, pesticidal, and specialty chemicals and the law and business issues surrounding chemicals. B&C’s talented team of lawyers, scientists, and consultants will keep listeners abreast of the changing world of both domestic and international chemical regulation and provide analysis of the many intriguing and complicated issues surrounding this space.  All Things Chemical™ is available now on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, and Google Play Music.  Subscribe so you never miss an episode. 


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
On April 16, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosted a call on its recently announced plan to reduce the burden for certain stakeholders subject to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) fees rule requirements for EPA-initiated risk evaluations.  The call covered:

  • How EPA’s plan to initiate a rulemaking to consider proposing exemptions to the current rule’s requirements impacts manufacturers and other businesses;
     
  • What the “No Action Assurance” means for importers of articles and producers of byproducts and impurities; and
     
  • Reporting obligations during the current comment period, which will close May 27, 2020.

EPA announced on March 25, 2020, that plans to initiate a new rulemaking process to consider proposing exemptions to the current rule’s self-identification requirements associated with EPA-initiated risk evaluations for manufacturers that:

  • Import the chemical substance in an article;
     
  • Produce the chemical substance as a byproduct; or
     
  • Produce or import the chemical substance as an impurity.

During the call, EPA stated that it expects to begin rulemaking in the short term with the goal of issuing a final rule by October 1, 2021.  As a bridge to the final rule, EPA issued a “No Action Assurance” for these three categories of manufacturers.  EPA will not pursue enforcement action against entities in these manufacturer categories for failure to self-identify under 40 C.F.R. Section 700.45(b)(5).
 
EPA has posted frequently asked questions (FAQ) about TSCA fees for EPA-initiated risk evaluations.  The current FAQs include:

March 2020 Rulemaking Announcement and No Action Assurance

  1. Why is EPA announcing its intention to propose exemptions to the TSCA fees rule?
  2. What is the expected timing for this rulemaking?
  3. Is EPA considering any other changes to the TSCA fees rule as part of this rulemaking?
  4. What does the “No Action Assurance” mean?
  5. Do entities in the three categories in the planned regulatory change still have to self-identify during the comment period closing on May 27, 2020?
  6. Are entities in the three categories impacted by the planned regulatory change still responsible for paying a portion of the risk evaluation fee?
  7. What should I do if I’ve already self-identified as a manufacturer, but fall into one of the three categories in the planned regulatory change?
  8. What should I do if I’ve been identified on a Preliminary List, but fall into one of the three categories in the planned regulatory change?
  9. What should I do if I fall into one of the three categories in the planned regulatory change, but have NOT yet self-identified and was NOT identified on a Preliminary List?
  10. What constitutes an “article” for purposes of the planned regulatory change?
  11. What constitutes a “byproduct” for purposes of the planned regulatory change?
  12. What constitutes an “impurity” for purposes of the planned regulatory change?

Reporting for TSCA Fees

  1. What do I have to do if my entity was erroneously on a Preliminary List?

EPA has posted the slides for the call.  EPA states that it will post a transcript of the call on its website.

Resources

Our March 4, 2020, memorandum, “EPA Plans to Provide Additional Clarification on Self-Identifying as a Manufacturer or Importer of a High-Priority Chemical,” suggested that industry stakeholders that believe they may be impacted by the January 27 notice may wish to consider suspending ongoing internal deliberations on self-reporting obligations until EPA provides additional guidance.
 
Information on forming a consortium is available in our March 2, 2020, memorandum, “The Essential Value of Forming TSCA Consortia.”
 
More information on the 20 substances designated as high-priority substances is available in our December 20, 2019, memorandum, “Final List of High-Priority Chemicals Will Be Next to Undergo Risk Evaluation under TSCA.”
 
More information on the final TSCA fees rule is available in our September 28, 2018, memorandum, “EPA Issues Final TSCA Fees Rule.”


 

By Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton
 
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) is hosting the following webinars to educate scientists on the more than 30 federal opportunities available in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina:

Webinar participants will learn about OCSPP’s role in protecting human health and the environment, OCSPP’s newly formed worksite located in Research Triangle Park, and the more than 30 scientific positions for which OCSPP is recruiting.  The webinar will also cover finding and applying to EPA jobs, creating profiles and saving searches on USAJobs, education and transcripts requirements for scientific positions, and the federal general schedule (GS) pay scale, benefits, and retirement.

Tags: OCSPP, Webinar

 
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