Federal/EPA Regulatory Policy

Lynn L. Bergeson, James V. Aidala, Jr., Charles M. Auer, Richard Engler, and Oscar Hernandez, "Practitioner Insights: Enhancing TSCA Reform Implementation," BNA Daily Environment Report, August 2, 2017.

The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act significantly amended the Toxic Substances Control Act. The act, which has been in force for just over a year, made substantive changes to multiple sections of TSCA that are proving to be even more consequential than anticipated (new TSCA is identified as Pub. L. No. 114-182 and old TSCA was identified as Pub. L. No. 94-469).

This paper, authored principally by former EPA officials and a practicing TSCA lawyer, all with long experience under old TSCA, provides suggestions for new approaches or ‘‘fixes’’ that could assist the agency and interested groups in moving toward smoother implementation of the new law, achieving policy goals, and ensuring greater transparency. These suggestions are presented in no particular order and in the spirit of urging other stakeholders to also think of creative ways to ensure that new TSCA fulfills Congress’s mandate to develop an effective domestic chemical management program.

Lynn L. Bergeson and Timothy D. Backstrom, "Appellate Court Vacates Conditional Nanosilver Registration," ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources PCRRTK Newsletter, Volume 18, Issue 5, August 2017.

On May 30, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit responded to two petitions for review of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) conditional registration under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) of a nanosilver pesticide product and vacated that conditional registration. NRDC v. EPA, No. 15-72308. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), the Center for Food Safety (CFS), and the International Center for Technology Assessment (ICTA) filed petitions in 2015 asking the court to set aside EPA’s final order granting a conditional registration for a nanosilver containing antimicrobial pesticide product named NSPW-L30SWS (NSPW). The court vacated the conditional registration because, according to the court, “EPA failed to support its finding that NSPW was in the public interest.”

Lisa M. Campbell, Timothy D. Backstrom, and James V. Aidala, "EPA’s Evaluation and Determination of Epidemiological Data for Chlorpyrifos," ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources PCRRTK Newsletter, Volume 18, Issue 5, August 2017.

Among the many legal, regulatory, and policy issues being watched closely by pesticide registrants as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) long and contentious review of chlorpyrifos registrations continues is the controversy concerning when EPA may appropriately apply a tenfold uncertainty factor pursuant to the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA 10X). This issue centers around EPA’s novel and unprecedented use of epidemiological data and the statutory requirements that govern EPA’s determination that sufficient uncertainty exists to warrant applying the FQPA 10X, not only to chlorpyrifos itself, but to all organophosphate (OP) pesticide products. This issue has drawn much attention and concern from pesticide registrants, and from other interested parties. The issues directly affecting chlorpyrifos have played out not only in EPA’s registration review process for chlorpyrifos, but also in a court challenge to EPA’s decision.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "The Final Rule," Manufacturing Today, July 21, 2017.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued on Jan. 12, 2017, a final rule under Section 8(a) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) establishing reporting and recordkeeping requirements for certain discrete forms of chemical substances that are manufactured or processed at the nanoscale. This column summarizes the rule.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "EPA Issues TSCA Framework Rules," Chemical Processing, July 18, 2017.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued in June final framework rules under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Each is summarized in the article.

Lynn L. Bergeson, Daniel B. González, Anabela Aldaz, and Christopher J. McNevin, "Mini-Roundtable: Environmental Disputes," Corporate Disputes, July-September, 2017.

A major change, brought about by the November elections, is the uptick in citizen suit litigation, and lawsuits brought by third parties against the government. Given the current administration’s position on climate change, environmental regulation generally, and the perception that regulations impede economic growth and job development, there has been a significant slowdown in regulatory and administrative activity and the initiation of enforcement actions. NGOs and third-party activists will continue to fill this void by private lawsuits as citizen litigants.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "EPA Eyes ‘Burdensome’ Rules," Chemical Processing, May 19, 2017.

On February 24, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order (EO) 13777, Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda. The EO offers opportunities for stakeholders to improve regulations. This article summarizes efforts to implement this EO, and identifies opportunities stakeholders may wish to pursue to eliminate or amend regulatory initiatives they feel have outlived their utility or were ill-conceived from the get-go.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "TSCA Implementation Remains On Target: The EPA is issuing framework rules on a timely basis," Chemical Processing, March 22, 2017.

Implementation of the newly amended Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), signed into law last June, is in full swing. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been working hard to meet statutorily imposed deadlines for promulgating three “framework” rules by June 2017. To date, the EPA is on target. This column discusses the three framework rules.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "The EPA Seems Set for a Busy 2017 Under Trump Administration," Chemical Processing, January 24, 2017.

Last year was full of surprises, two of which will drive much of the agenda in 2017 for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). First, Congress significantly amended the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Although many thought the chances of successful TSCA legislation were slim, the second surprise event was even more unexpected — the election of Donald Trump as President.

Lynn L. Bergeson, "Next Generation Compliance and Its Implications for Industry," Environmental Quality Management, Volume 26, Issue 1, Fall 2016.

“Next Generation Compliance” is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) signature initiative intended to increase compliance with environmental regulations by using advances in pollution monitoring and information technology and by more effectively using and designing regulations and permits to reduce pollution and enhance compliance.  This column describes EPA’s initiative, discusses several examples of its applications in rulemakings and civil enforcement settlements, discusses another new compliance-related tool, eDisclosure, and outlines the implications for industry of these novel approaches to incentivizing compliance.

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