IPC Efforts to Repeal Burdensome EPA Proposal Results in Congressional Action

By Stephanie Castorina, IPC EHS manager

IPC recently garnered Congressional support in our quest to stop EPA from imposing burdensome reporting requirements under the Toxics Substances Control Act (TSCA) inventory Update Reporting (IUR) proposed rule. On April 4, Representative Fred Upton (R-MI), Chairman of the House Committee on Energy and the Environment, and Representative John Shimkus (R-IL), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Environment and Economy, sent a letter requesting repeal of the proposed rule. As a result of IPC’s efforts, the proposed TSCA IUR rule was an issue discussed during a subcommittee hearing held on February 15, 2011 on burdensome, unnecessary EPA regulations. Industry concerns with the proposed rule raised during the hearing resonated with Congress. The letter highlights many of industry’s concerns, including the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) outlandish interpretation that byproducts sent for recycling are new chemicals subject to the rule. We hope that this letter, combined with other IPC advocacy efforts, will result in significant changes to the proposed rule.

IPC was instrumental in getting the proposed TSCA IUR rule on the subcommittee hearing agenda. We worked with committee staff to highlight this issue and the potential impact it will have on the entire U.S. manufacturing sector. A full account of the hearing can be found in the EHS article in the April IPC InTouch Newsletter (IPC members only access).

The letter from Congress highlights the numerous onerous reporting requirements and the absurd interpretation that byproducts sent for recycling are subject to the TSCA IUR rule as new chemicals. The chairmen classify the reporting requirements as a “costly data-gathering exercise” that will have “adverse economic consequences, especially for small businesses.” Each area of the proposed rule that is unwarranted, including the characterization of byproducts sent for recycling as new chemicals subject to the rule is discussed in the letter. Mentioning EPA’s outlandish interpretation and the disincentive to recycling, the chairmen conclude their argument by saying, “This whipsaw approach to regulation and re-cycling stewardship must come to an end.” The letter was an excellent culmination of all of industry’s concerns with the proposed rule and is an important step towards a more workable regulation.

Background information, IPC’s concerns, and IPC’s comments on the proposed TSCA IUR rule can be found on:

–        IPC TSCA IUR Website
–        EHS Update in March/April 2010 IPC Review (IPC Members only access)

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