EPA restricts carpet chemicals
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is finalizing a rule that will allow the agency to restrict imports of potentially harmful perfluorinated chemicals that could be used in carpets, according to a press release.
The regulation will require companies to report to EPA all new uses, including in domestic and imported products, of these chemicals once used for soil and stain resistance in carpets, the release stated.
According to the release, these chemicals have been shown to persist in the environment and bioaccumulate in humans and animals — they represent a potential threat to American’s health.
"While this category of chemicals has largely been voluntarily phased out by the U.S. chemical industry and not in use in this country, they could still be imported in carpets. Today's action will ensure that EPA has the opportunity to take action to restrict or limit the intended use, if warranted, for any new domestic uses or imports," said Jim Jones, EPA’s assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.
The final rule issued today, known as a Significant New Use Rule under the Toxic Substances Control Act, requires that anyone who intends to manufacture (including import) or process any long-chain perfluoroalkyl carboxylic (LCPFAC) chemicals for use in carpets or carpet products submit a notification to EPA at least 90 days before beginning the activity, providing the agency with an opportunity to review and, if necessary, place limits on manufacturers or processors who intend to reintroduce or import products with these chemicals, the release noted.
Click here to read the release in its entirety.