US EPA Floats First SNURs Using Streamlined Framework
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed significant new use rules (SNURs) to address risks that a group of new chemicals could present if used in certain reasonably foreseen ways. The draft framework seeks to speed agency review of new chemical applications for approval, known as premanufacture notices (PMN), as the agency faced a backlog after enactment of the revised Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). The revised statute generally requires the agency to issue a finding on each PMN received. Each must meet TSCA’s risk standard of not posing unreasonable risk to human health or the environment based on the proposed conditions of use, as well as “reasonably foreseen uses.” Learn more at www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca.
Chemical Makers Face New US EPA Fees
The US EPA collects fees from certain chemical manufacturers and processors. These are used to develop risk evaluations for existing chemicals; collect and review toxicity and exposure data; and make determinations in a timely and transparent manner with respect to the safety of new chemicals before they enter the marketplace. Review the new fees at www.epa.gov/tsca-fees/fees-administration-toxic-substances-control-act.
US EPA Identifying Next Groups of TSCA Chemicals
The US EPA has released the approach it will use to identify chemicals that could be included in the next group of risk evaluations under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Additionally, the agency will be looking for input from the public on which chemicals should be prioritized for risk evaluation and which chemicals may be low priorities. Learn more at https://www.epa.gov/assessing-and-managing-chemicals-under-tsca/identifying-existing-chemicals-prioritization-under-tsca.
TSCA PMN Guidance: Pointers for Submitters
Guidance for companies preparing to submit chemical notifications pursuant to the Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) was published by the EPA. Intended to assist submitters in preparing a Premanufacture Notice (PMN) under TSCA Section 5, EPA has issued the Guidance to promote “early engagement and communication” and enhance overall understanding of the TSCA submittal process. Learn more at www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/points-consider-when-preparing-tsca.
Feds Release Final Implementation Rule for 2015 Ozone Standard
US EPA posted its final implementation rule for the 2015 ozone standard on its website. The final rule retains many of the provisions from the implementation rule for the 2008 ozone standard, including provisions related to state implementation plan (SIP) submittal deadlines, modeling and attainment demonstration requirements, reasonable further progress (RFP), reasonably available control technology (RACT) and reasonably available control measure (RACM) requirements, and ambient monitoring requirements. Learn more at www.epa.gov/ ground-level-ozone-pollution/implementation-2015-national-ambient-air-quality-standards-ozone.
SGP Foundation, a New Educational Nonprofit
The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP) announced its sister company, the SGP Foundation, Inc. (SGPF), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization. Its mission is to provide education and awareness of the best practices associated with sustainability in the printing industry, including printers, suppliers and customers/print buyers. Learn more at www.sgppartnership.org.
Printing Industry in Top Three for Lockout/Tagout Violations
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), in 2018 there were 2,657 lockout/ tagout citations amounting to $13,860,475 in penalties. The top five industries accounted for 463 citations in 257 inspections, totaling more than $2 million in penalties. The list is topped by wood container and pallet manufacturing (NAICS 32192), followed by machine shops (NAICS 33271) and printing (NAICS 32311). Being near the top of the list will keep the printing industry on the radar of OSHA inspectors.
OSHA Enforcement Policy for Worksite Air Contaminants
OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs issued an enforcement memorandum, providing a new “Enforcement Policy for Respiratory Hazards Not Covered by OSHA Permissible Exposure Limits.” OSHA’s 2003 policy on the same topic now is superseded and archived. The Enforcement Policy explains how and when OSHA will cite an employer for respiratory hazards from an air contaminant under the Occupational Safety and Health Act’s general duty clause (GDC). The GDC is the statutory requirement that an employer furnish each employee a place of employment free from recognized hazards. Learn more at www.osha.gov/ laws-regs/standardinterpretations/2018-11-02.
Amazon Publishes Policy on Safer Chemicals
Amazon is the latest retailer to publish a chemicals policy and a public Restricted Substances List. Amazon’s new policy is a big deal: Not only is it the third largest retailer by sales in the US, it is the first primarily e-commerce retailer to create a chemicals policy. E-commerce represents a challenge in terms of implementing such a policy, but as shoppers increasingly turn to online retailers for many purchasing needs, it also presents a major opportunity to increase the availability of safer products. Learn more at www. aboutamazon.com/sustainability/responsible-sourcing.
Doreen M. Monteleone, Ph.D.
Director of Sustainability & EHS Initiatives
RadTech International North America
News From the West Coast
SCAQMD’s $2.9 Million Fine
The South Coast Air Quality Management District recently issued Notices of Violations to a paint company that resulted in a settlement payment to the agency of $2,964,775. The agency cited the company for alleged violations of its rule 1143 – Consumer Paint Thinners and Multi-Purpose Solvents. The company was accused of manufacturing, packaging and offering for sale a consumer paint thinner and/or multipurpose solvent with volatile organic content (VOC) in excess of 25 grams per liter within the AQMD’s area of jurisdiction; failure to display the VOC content on the actual product; failure to maintain records to verify data necessary to determine annual consumer paint thinner and multipurpose solvent sales; and failure to provide a list of all US distributors, as well as failure to provide emission reports for 2015 and 2016.
Lower VOC for Adhesives
On January 1, 2019, new VOC limits for adhesives and sealants took effect in the South Coast Air Quality Management District. Some of the new limits are shown here.
California’s Prop 65 Clarifies Chain of Commerce Responsibilities
California’s Proposition 65 requires businesses to provide a “clear and reasonable” warning before causing an exposure to a chemical listed as known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity. Proposed amendments to the “Clear and Reasonable Warnings” section (Title 27 of the California Code of Regulations Article 6, Section 25600.2) were announced that would further clarify the regulatory provision implementing the statutory direction to place the primary obligation for providing a warning on the product manufacturer, thus minimizing the impact on the retail seller.
California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) has determined clarification is needed because, in some situations, the original manufacturer, distributor, importer or others may not know where or by whom the product will ultimately be sold to a consumer. The amendments provide that a given business in the chain of commerce may comply with the act by providing the notice and warning materials directly to the designated agent for the business to whom it is transferring or selling the product to the retail seller.
UV/EB Exempt in Rhode Island Printing Regulations
The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management Office of Air Resources is proposing to amend air pollution control regulation, 250RICR1200521 “Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions from Printing Operations” (Part 21), which limits emissions of volatile organic compounds from printing operations. The amendments are the result of 2017 sanctions issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The amendments include an exemption for UV/EB technology under the “Offset Lithographic and Letterpress Printing” Section (21.7.2), which states that printing facilities using ultraviolet or electron beam radiation-cured materials are exempt. Rhode Island is required to resolve the problem by March 2019.
Director of Regional Environmental Affairs
RadTech International North America