Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

'Industry Friendly' EPA Completes Review of 600 New Chemicals

Popular
'Industry Friendly' EPA Completes Review of 600 New Chemicals

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it has eliminated a backlog of more than 600 new chemicals it is reviewing under the agency's new chemical safety program.

"I am happy to report that the backlog of new chemical reviews is eliminated," EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said. The goal of the agency "is to ensure a new chemicals program that is both protective of human health and the environment, while also being supportive of bringing new chemicals to market."


But environmental groups accused the Trump administration for marching to the chemical industry's orders.

Richard Denison, a lead senior scientist with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), said the move puts the industry's demands for ready market access above public health protection.

Denison said the EPA sidestepped the Frank Lautenberg Act, a critical environmental law signed by President Obama in 2016 that overhauled the "badly broken" Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976.

The Lautenberg Act resulted in a temporary backlog of hundreds of new chemical notices. But in recent months, EPA staff have faced "relentless pressure from the chemical industry—and internally from new industry-friendly senior management—not only to speed up reviews, but to return the program to its pre-Lautenberg practices," Denison said.

"While many details of the shifts EPA is making remain murky, EDF is concerned that EPA is moving away from the law's clear requirements that: EPA rigorously review both intended and reasonably foreseen uses of new chemicals and, where EPA identifies potential risks or lacks sufficient information, it issue an order imposing conditions on the manufacturer of the new chemical sufficient to mitigate the potential risk," Denison said.

The chemical industry cheered the EPA's announcement.

"EPA deserves our congratulations and thanks," Martha Marrapese, an attorney with the Washington office of Wiley Rein LLP, told Bloomberg BNA. "Reaching this milestone reflects a lot of hard work on the part of EPA staff and industry as we all learn how to navigate the new TSCA landscape."

Google Earth's latest feature allows you to watch the climate change in four dimensions.

Read More Show Less
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Researchers say there's a growing epidemic of tap water distrust and disuse in the U.S. Teresa Short / Moment Open / Getty Images

By Asher Rosinger

Imagine seeing a news report about lead contamination in drinking water in a community that looks like yours. It might make you think twice about whether to drink your tap water or serve it to your kids – especially if you also have experienced tap water problems in the past.

Read More Show Less
Trending
A new report urges immediate climate action to control global warming. John W Banagan / Getty Images

A new report promoting urgent climate action in Australia has stirred debate for claiming that global temperatures will rise past 1.5 degrees Celsius in the next decade.

Read More Show Less
Winegrowers check vines during the burning of anti-frost candles in the Luneau-Papin wine vineyard in Le Landreau, near Nantes, western France, on April 12, 2021. SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS / AFP via Getty Images

French winemakers are facing devastating grape loss from the worst frost in decades, preceded by unusually warm temperatures, highlighting the dangers to the sector posed by climate change.

Read More Show Less
A recent study focused on regions in Ethiopia, Africa's largest coffee-producing nation. Edwin Remsberg / Getty Images

Climate change could make it harder to find a good cup of coffee, new research finds. A changing climate might shrink suitable areas for specialty coffee production without adaptation, making coffee taste blander and impacting the livelihoods of small farms in the Global South.

Read More Show Less