Apr 22, 2020

EPA Publishes Scope Documents for 20 Risk Evaluation Chemicals

(PAINT.ORG) This month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published 20 draft scope documents for high-priority chemicals undergoing Risk Evaluation under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). These are the 20 high priority chemicals that EPA designated for TSCA Risk Evaluation in December 2019.

EPA is accepting comments on the first 13 scoping documents, made available on April 6, through May 26. By statute, EPA must finalize scoping documents by June 20, 2020. Stakeholders must submit comment on the second batch of seven chemicals within 45 days of publication in the Federal Register. At this writing, EPA had not published in the Federal Register.

The scope documents include the proposed conditions of use, hazards, exposures, and the potentially exposed or susceptible subpopulations that EPA expects to consider in the TSCA risk evaluations. The documents also include: a description of the reasonably available information and the science approaches that EPA plans to use, a conceptual model that outlines the potential hazards and exposures throughout the life cycle of the chemical, an analysis plan to identify the approaches and methods EPA plans to use to assess health and environmental factors, and a potential plan for peer review.

Notably, EPA has not proposed exclusions for de minimis amounts. EPA may consider exclusions for de minimis amounts on a case-by-case basis, with supporting data. Information related to amounts in products or used in processes, exposures or controls/personal protective equipment (PPE) may be useful in seeking such an exemption.

EPA also generally includes disposal as a condition of use where it did not in the first 10 chemicals it evaluated. This is likely due to the 9th Circuit's opinion in Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families, et. al. v. EPA (No. 17-72260), where the 9th Circuit evaluated scope of EPA risk evaluations as required by EPA's risk evaluation framework rule.

The 20 Scoping Documents are as follows: