The EPA Must Finalize Rules to Act on Dangerous Chemicals

The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) regulates thousands of chemicals used in everyday items such as furniture and baby products, as well as commercial and industrial chemicals. In 2016, Congress approved bi-partisan revisions to the 1976 law, widely thought to be outdated and ineffective. The Environmental Protection Agency now needs to finalize two new rules which would allow the Agency to select and assess chemicals for whether they pose an “unreasonable risk” by June 22, 2017 at the direction of Congress. To be effective, both rules need to include: a comprehensive evaluation of a chemical’s uses and lifecycle; protections for vulnerable populations from cumulative chemical exposures; and flexible methodologies that can be adapted to reflect the latest science.