EPA Updates Chemicals List
WASHINGTON — March 7, 2019 — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released an update of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Inventory listing the chemicals that are actively being manufactured, processed, and imported in the United States. This is the first major update to the EPA chemicals list in 40 years, according to a press release.
After a tremendous effort from thousands of stakeholders and manufacturers across the U.S., the update revealed that fewer than half of the total number of chemicals on the current TSCA Inventory (47 percent or 40,655 of the 86,228 chemicals) are currently in commerce. This crucial information will help the EPA focus risk evaluation efforts on those chemicals that are still on the market.
“It’s important for us to know which chemicals are actually in use today. This will help us with our work prioritizing chemicals, evaluating, and addressing risks. This information also increases transparency to the public,” said Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention Assistant Administrator Alexandra Dapolito Dunn.
As recently as 2018, the TSCA Inventory showed over 86,000 chemicals available for commercial production and use in the U.S. Until this update, it was not known which of these chemicals on the TSCA Inventory actually were in commerce. Under amended TSCA — The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21 Century Act — the EPA was required to update the list and designate which chemicals are active or inactive in U.S. commerce.
From August 11, 2017 through October 5, 2018, chemical manufacturers and processors provided information on which chemicals were manufactured, imported, or processed in the U.S. over the past ten years, the period ending June 21, 2016. The Agency constructed the update from the more than 90,000 responses received, which represents a significant reporting effort by manufacturers, importers, and processors.
The update also found that of the 40,655 chemicals in commerce, more than 80 percent (32,898) have identities that are not Confidential Business Information (CBI), increasing public access to additional information about them. For the less than 20 percent of chemicals in commerce that do have confidential identities, the EPA is developing a rule outlining how the Agency will review and substantiate all CBI claims seeking to protect the specific chemical identities of substances on the confidential portion of the TSCA Inventory.
To download the public version of the initial TSCA Inventory, get more information about the TSCA Inventory Notification (Active-Inactive) Requirements rule, or requirements to notify EPA going forward, visit https://www.epa.gov/tsca-inventory.