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EPA Announces Priority Designations for Chemicals

On March 20, 2019, the EPA announced the first group of proposed 20 “high priority” and 20 “low priority” chemicals for prioritization for risk assessment under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) as amended in 2016. EPA is required, under the 2016 TSCA amendments, to designate 20 chemicals in each category by the end of 2019. Under TSCA Section 2605(b)(1)(B), “high priority” refers to a chemical that the EPA determines, “without consideration of costs or other non-risk factors, may present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment because of a potential hazard and a potential route of…

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American Chemistry Council Reviews EPA Role in TSCA Implementation

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) has publicly expressed its confidence in the EPA’s implementation of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). ACC views the new EPA administrator Andrew Wheeler as a significant victory in its goal of fully implementing the TSCA. At the same time, the EPA faces significant challenges in the near future including deadlines for final risk evaluations on a first set of ten chemicals and the designation of the next 20 chemicals for evaluation.  The ACC has set forth several goals in effectively implementing the TSCA, which include: Enhancing communication between the industry and the EPA with…

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EPA Releases Studies on PV29

The EPA has released 24 studies on pigment violet 29 (PV29) after receiving extensive criticism for withholding health and safety data supporting a risk evaluation under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in connection with the substance. In response to its critics, the EPA vowed to more carefully consider the protection of confidential business information (CBI) and to be more forthcoming with information related to chemicals in its evaluations. The agency stated that it is committed to transparency in its evaluation of the nine other chemicals that will be considered. The controversy began when the EPA released a draft evaluation…

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Increase in Notices of Prop 65 Violations for Online Web Sales

The amendments to Proposition 65 warning regulations that went into effect on August 30, 2018 include more stringent warning requirements for products requiring warnings sold online via the internet. Since those regulatory amendments became effective, only a few enforcement actions based on violations of the new online and internet warning requirements have been initiated. But in recent weeks, more than 50 Notices of Violation or “Threatened Violation” under Prop 65 have been issued against various companies, mostly wine distributions and online retailers. Private enforcer John Devlin is behind the recent onslaught of Prop 65 notices and currently most of these…

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State Considering New Legislation to Expand Oversight of “Harmful” Cosmetics

Legislation was introduced in February that would increase California’s oversight of chemicals that are deemed “harmful” for use in cosmetics. As amended by the California Assembly in March, Assembly Bill 495 (AB 495) proposes to ban 20 chemicals  from being intentionally added in cosmetics from being sold in California. The state has identified these chemicals as substances known to cause cancer or reproductive harm. The chemicals listed in AB 495 include mercury, lead, phthalates, formaldehyde, triclosan, asbestos, lead, and compounds known as PFAS. According to the state, cosmetic products containing these chemicals as intentionally added ingredients would be deemed “adulterated”…

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