Sep 18, 2020

EPA Publishes “First Ever” Rule Intended to Promote Transparency in Developing Regulatory Guidance Documents

On September 14, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a pre-publication version of a final rule establishing the procedures and requirements for how EPA will manage the issuance of guidance documents consistent with Executive Order (EO) 13891, "Promoting the Rule of Law Through Improved Agency Guidance Documents." The final regulation provides a definition of guidance document for the purposes of this rule, establishes general requirements and procedures for certain guidance documents issued by EPA, and incorporates additional requirements for guidance documents determined to be significant guidance.

Read full from Lynn L. Bergeson and Carla N. Hutton

EPA Releases Final Risk Evaluation Scope Documents for Next 20 High Priority Chemicals

From source: Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP - Alexandra B. Cunningham and Elizabeth Reese

TSCA requires EPA to issue final risk evaluations for each of the 20 chemicals no later than December 20, 2022, but EPA is authorized to grant itself a one-time six month extension to June 20, 2023 if it needs more time to complete its risk evaluations.

EPA will also soon proceed with risk evaluations for two phthalates—di-isodecyl phthalate (DIDP) and di-isononyl phthalate (DINP)—at the request of industry stakeholders. Scoping documents for those chemicals have not yet been released, but companies should also keep them on their radars.

Links to each of the 20 final scoping documents, as well as non-exhaustive lists of common uses of each chemical, are provided below.

Final Scope Document Common Uses
1,3-Butadiene Adhesives and sealants; resins; sealants; fuels; synthetic rubber; tires; paints and coatings
p-Dichlorobenzene (Benzene, 1,4-dicholoro-) Plastics; resins; solvents; odor agents and air fresheners; synthetic dyes and pigments; cleaning and furnishing care products; lubricants and greases; plastic foam insulation and foam sealants; fuel additives
1,2-Dichloroethane Intermediate in manufacturing (petrochemical, plastic material and resin, organic chemicals); adhesives and sealants; lubricants and greases; plastic and rubber products; embalming; degreasing and cleaning solvents
trans-1,2-Dicholoroethylene Plating and surface treating agents; cleaning and degreasing solvents; adhesives and sealants; inks; aerosol spray cleaners/degreasers; spot and stain removers; refrigerants; polyurethane foam building insulation
HHCB (1,3,4,6,7,8-Hexahydro-4,6,6,7,8,8-hexamethylcyclopenta [g]-2-benzopyran) Odor agents; soaps, fragrances; air fresheners; scented candles; cleaning products (including all-purpose liquid and bathroom cleaners); laundry products (including detergent and fabric softeners); plastic and rubber products
TBBPA (4,4'-(1-Methylethylidene)bis[2,6-dibromophenol]) Flame retardants; adhesive manufacturing; building and construction products; batteries; fabric, textile, and leather products
TPP (Triphenyl Phosphate) Flame retardants; paint and coatings; plasticizers; lubricants and greases; fluids and oils; foam seating and bedding products; electrical and electronic products
TCEP (Tris(2-chloroethyl) phosphate) Flame retardants; aircraft interiors; paints and coatings; fabric, textile, and leather products; building and construction products; foam seating and bedding products
Diethylhexyl Phthalate (DEHP) Plasticizers; adhesives and sealants; plastics and resins; paints and coatings; arts, crafts, and hobby materials; automotive and interior car care products; batteries; building and construction products; dyes and pigments; electrical and electronic products; furniture and furnishings; fabric, textile, and leather products; lawn and garden care products; paints and coatings; plastic and rubber products; toys, playground, and sporting equipment
Dicyclohexyl Phthalate (DCHP) Paints and coatings; plastics and resins; rubber products; adhesives; inks, toners, and colorants; asphalt paving; roofing materials; building and construction products; arts, crafts, and hobby materials
Diisobutyl Phthalate (DIBP) Plasticizers; adhesives and sealants; paints and coatings; fuels and related products; inks, toners, and colorants; fabric, textile, and leather products; building and construction products; air fresheners; floor coverings; toys, playground, and sporting equipment; plastic and rubber products
Butyl Benzyl Phthalate (BBP) Plasticizers; asphalt paving; roofing materials; fabric, textile, and leather products; plastic and rubber products; adhesives and sealants; automotive care products; building and construction materials; floor coverings; inks, toners, and related products; paints and coatings; arts, crafts, and hobby materials; toys, playground, and sporting equipment
Dibutyl Phthalate (DIBP) Plasticizers; asphalt paving; roofing and coating materials; adhesives and sealants; pants and coatings; resins; rubber products; soap and cleaning products; cleaning and furnishing care products; furniture; inks, toners, and colorants; personal care products; arts, crafts, and hobby materials; fabric, textile, and leather products; floor coverings; toys, playground, and sporting equipment; light sticks
Phthalic Anhydride Adhesives and sealants; paints and coatings; lubricants and greases; synthetic dyes and pigments; inks, toners, and colorants; plastic and rubber products; textile, apparel, and leather manufacturing; flame retardants; building and construction products; water filtration products
o-Dicholorobenzene (Benzene, 1,2-dichloro-) Solvents; plastics; resins; lubricants and greases; inks, dyes, toners, and pigments; paints and coatings; air fresheners; cleaning and furnishing care products; fuel additives; ceramics glaze
Formaldehyde Adhesives and sealants; plastics and resins; soaps and cleaning compounds; bleaching agents in wood products; textile, apparel, and leather manufacturing finishing agents; roofing materials; paints and coatings; asphalt paving; solvents; floor coverings; foam seating and bedding products; cleaning and furniture care products; water treatment products; laundry and dishwashing products; personal care products; building and construction products; lawn and garden products; electrical and electronic products; food packaging; plastic and rubber products; inks, toners, and colorants; arts, crafts, and hobby materials; automotive care products; toys, playground, and sporting equipment

Sep 17, 2020

Memorial Honoring Eula Bingham

On June 13, 2020, workers lost one their best allies, when Dr. Eula Bingham passed. She leaves behind a remarkable and indelible legacy.

The NIEHS Worker Training Program, the University of Cincinnati, and the Collegium Ramazzini are convening a 90-minute zoom remembrance to honor a true giant of occupational health.

Throughout the 90 years of her life, Dr. Bingham insisted tirelessly that workers had the absolute right to be safe on the job. Her thoughtful and generous wisdom shaped the entire field of occupational safety and health.

Her bold and courageous actions prevented countless illnesses and injuries in workers around the world. Among her many accomplishments, Dr. Bingham was a long-time Fellow and Past President of the Collegium Ramazzini.

We include here a link to her eulogy from the College.

Please join us as we honor and celebrate the life of Dr. Bingham.

Meeting ID: 160 400 5915
Passcode: 692153

Dial by your location
+1 669 254 5252 US (San Jose)
+1 646 828 7666 US (New York)


Sep 16, 2020

Chemical Data Reporting Is Due to EPA on November 30

Every four years, manufacturers and importers of chemicals must report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under its Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule, 40 C.F.R. Part 711. The CDR rule, issued under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), requires manufacturers or importers to file reports for all chemical substances they manufacture or import over certain volume thresholds — subject to some exemptions. The CDR rule is not limited to companies that sell chemicals; it applies to any entity that manufactures or imports chemical substances in commerce in the United States (that is, listed on the TSCA Chemical Substance Inventory).

The CDR rule applies to a broad range of industries including biotechnology companies, paper and metal manufacturers, and electric utilities. Many manufacturers and importers may be unaware of this obligation, especially start-up companies and fast-growing midsize companies. CDR reports for 2020, which cover calendar years 2016 through 2019, are due to EPA by November 30. Required information includes chemical identities of substances, total annual production or import volume, volumes used onsite and exported, and risks to onsite workers.

Read full at:

Sep 10, 2020

[p2tech] Join NPPR for two virtual events during P2 Week

Join the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable for two P2 Week virtual events.

On September 21 from 4-5:30 pm EDT, reconnect with your colleagues at the NPPR 35th Anniversary P2 Virtual Reunion to catch up and discuss the past, present, and future of P2. Anyone who has been involved with pollution prevention during the past 40 years is welcome. Register for the event at

On September 22 from 1:30-3 pm EDT, NPPR and U.S. EPA Region 4 are partnering for P2 Week and NPPR'S P2U kickoff webinar. People, Prosperity, Planet…the Journey to Sustainability will celebrate 30 years of the P2 Act, 35 years of NPPR, and 50 years of the EPA.

Session Topics
  • Definition and impact of P2.
  • A brief discussion of the evolution of P2, including federal P2 legislation in 1990, EPA programs that advance P2 principles and foster implementation, P2 in today's world, and where

EPA's P2 program is headed in the future.
  • Brief history of NPPR's origins and how it currently supports P2 work being done at the local, state, and national level.
  • Announcement of NPPR's 2020 MVP2 Award Winners.
  • Launch of NPPR's P2U Training Series, a collaborative effort between [p2tech] Join NPPR for two virtual events during P2 Week

NPPR and EPA Region 4 that supports networking and professional development for P2 practitioners.

Open to all who seek a better understanding of P2, relevant federal programs, and/or resources to support the P2 community. It's brought to you by NPPR and EPA Region 4 at no cost. Register at

We hope you can join us for both of these events.

Sep 9, 2020

Washington State Safer Products Update on Paints

( In July, the Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE) submitted its Priority Consumer Products report to the Washington Legislature and included Paints on the list under the "Safer Products for Washington" program. Washington DOE included food and beverage cans (bisphenols) and cited concerns over inadvertent Polychlorinated biphenyls (iPCBs) as the reasoning.

Notably, DOE has identified all paints — not just paints used by consumers —  in the scope of iPCBs under the Safer Products program.

In 2019, the Washington State Legislature directed DOE to implement a regulatory program to reduce toxic chemicals in consumer products (Chapter 70.365 RCW), known as the "Safer Products for Washington." The Legislature identified five priority chemical classes: flame retardants; Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS); Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs); Phenolic compounds; and Phthalates. The law requires Ecology to identify priority consumer products that are significant sources or uses of the chemical classes. DOE suggests that iPCBs may form as a byproduct in the production of certain chlorinated color pigments including Diarylide yellows, Phthalocyanine blues and greens, and possibly certain titanium dioxides.

DOE is scheduled to complete Phase 3 and over the next two years will identify alternatives and report back to the Legislature any proposed regulatory actions on June 1, 2022. Then, DOE would adopt any such regulations by June 1, 2023. Ultimately, DOE could decide "no regulatory action is needed," if alternatives are not available or feasible, or DOE could possibly restrict the use of the certain pigments that contain iPCBs.

Read full from source at (

Sep 8, 2020

High Levels of Toxic Chemicals Found in Dust Inside College Classrooms

(Science Daily) Researchers detected 43 different types of flame retardants and found the composition of flame retardants varied from space to space based on the flammability standard the different schools followed. Overall, flame retardant levels were significantly higher in spaces with outdated furniture meeting TB117 and/or TB133 than in spaces meeting the newer TB117-2013 standard.

In older TB133 classrooms, levels of a phased-out flame retardant and its replacement (BDE 209 and DBDPE) were three and eight times higher, respectively, than the highest levels previously reported in indoor spaces in the United States. That report came from an earlier study by Silent Spring that looked at dust in college dorm rooms.

The team also detected the carcinogen TDCIPP and a structurally similar flame retardant called TCIPP in rooms meeting the newer standard, likely due to the chemicals' widespread use in many other materials such as plastics, rubber, and textiles.

"This is an important study and the first to evaluate the impact of the new TB117-2013 standard on flame retardant levels in dust," says Arlene Blum, executive director of the Green Science Policy Institute. "It shows that updating an obscure fire standard leads to lower levels of harmful flame retardants and healthier indoor spaces."

Sep 3, 2020

New WHO free-online course Occupational health and safety for health workers in the context of COVID-19

WHO has launched a new  free-online course Occupational health and safety for health workers in the context of COVID-19: All health workers require knowledge and skills to protect themselves and others from the occupational risks they encounter, so that they can work safely and effectively. This course covers four areas in response to these needs: infectious risks to health and safety, physical risks to health and safety, psychosocial risks to health and safety and basic occupational health and safety in health services.

Feel free to disseminate, tweet , facebook

There will be translations to Spanish, Russian, French, Arabic, Chinese and Portuguese, and to many other languages.


Overview: In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, working conditions for health workers may deteriorate. In addition to the risks of infection with COVID-19, health workers continue to experience other occupational health and safety risks of biological, physical or psychosocial nature. Therefore, for the protection of physical and mental health, safety and well-being of health workers, WHO recommends a combination of measures for infection prevention and control, occupational health and safety and psychosocial support.

Health workers participating in pandemic response are exposed to many different occupational risks to health and safety. These include: COVID-19 infection, illness, and transmission to others; fatigue from working longer hours and heavy workload, insufficient sleep or rest, dehydration, and inadequate nutrition; musculoskeletal injury from handling of patients and heavy objects, prolonged work while using personal protective equipment which can cause heat stress, skin and mucosal damage; workplace violence and stigma, and a variety of mental health problems, emotional distress and occupational burn-out.

The target audience for this course is health workers, incident managers, supervisors and administrators who make policies and protocols for their health facilities.

Learning objectives: By the end of this course, you should be able to:

·         describe the most common occupational risks to health and safety to which health workers are exposed while responding to the COVID-19 pandemic;

·         describe the rights of health workers to decent working conditions;

·         describe how to apply measures for protecting their health and safety and actively propose improvements; and

·         access and use supportive services for protection of health and safety of health workers.


Course duration: Approximately 1 hour.

Certificates: A Confirmation of Participation will be available to participants who complete 100% of the course material.

Course contents

  • Introduction:

This introductory module gives an overview of occupational health and safety in the context of COVID-19.

  • Module 1: Infectious risks to health and safety:

By the end of this module, you should be able to: explain how health workers can be exposed to infectious hazards; describe how respiratory infections and bloodborne pathogens are transmitted to health workers; and describe the steps that health workers can take to protect themselves from respiratory infections: standard precautions and control measures to prevent different infections.

  • Module 2: Physical risks to health and safety:

By the end of this module, you should be able to: list the major risk factors for musculoskeletal disorders in the health sector; describe high risk activities when handling patients; and describe the major types of occupational hazards that health workers face and how to prevent them.

  • Module 3: Psychosocial risks to health and safety:

By the end of this module, you should be able to: list the major sources of psychosocial risks for health workers; describe the signs of fatigue and how to prevent it; describe the risk factors, signs and preventive actions for workplace violence; and describe how health workers and managers can protect and support mental health.

  • Module 4: Basic occupational health and safety in health services:

By the end of this module, you should be able to: describe the responsibilities of employers and managers in occupational health safety and describe actions that can be taken by health workers to promote occupational health and safety.

Sep 2, 2020

FREE - Airborne Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Virtual Workshop

There is much we don't know about the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. We know it can spread from an infected person's sneeze or cough. But what do we know about transmission via speech and exhaled breath? How long do infectious particles linger in the air? How far can they travel? This Environmental Health Matters Initiative (EHMI) workshop will delve into the rapidly evolving science on the spread of the virus, as part of a larger body of COVID-19 related work at the National Academies. We will feature experts in aerosol science, virology, infectious disease, and epidemiology.

Participants can follow the conversation on Twitter at #EnviroHealthMatters.

Join Airborne Transmission of SARS-CoV-2: A Virtual Workshop here