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EPA Finalizes List of 20 Low-Priority Chemicals

Monday, February 24, 2020

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Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized its list of 20 chemical substances that it has identified as low priority under the Toxic Substances Control Act.

This final designation of low priority means that no risk evaluations are warranted for these chemicals at this time.

TSCA Background

In 2016 the TSCA got its first upgrade in 40 years as part of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which now requires the EPA to test all of the chemicals that had gotten through the previously weak TSCA (about 85,000 untested chemicals) with a target of about 2,000 a year.

Chemicals are sorted into “high” and “low” priority categories. No further action is taken with chemicals considered to be “low priority,” but “high priority” chemicals then move on to a risk evaluation.

© iStock / Skyhobo

Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized its list of 20 chemical substances that it has identified as low priority under the Toxic Substances Control Act.

The risk evaluation first looks at all possible uses of a chemical (everything from how it’s manufactured to how it’s used and how it’s disposed of). Then, it will look at how many possible ways it can come into contact with people and the impact it will have. After its possible exposure is totaled, the EPA will then look at the impact it will have on society’s most vulnerable—such as children—industry workers or the environment. This step has to be concluded within three years. If the EPA thinks it needs more time for analysis, it can extend the process one additional year.

After the evaluation is complete, the EPA decides whether or not to regulate the chemical. If the chemical is deemed unsafe, the EPA then has two years to specify restrictions. This timeframe can also extend an additional year.

Recent Low Priorities

In August, the EPA first proposed the 20 low-priority substances.

To support the proposed priority designation, the EPA considered reasonably available information for each chemical substance under its conditions of use against the criteria specified in TSCA section 6(b)(1)(A), the organization notes.

“Today’s action is the result of a rigorous, transparent and scientifically sound process to ensure chemicals in commerce do not pose unreasonable risks,” the EPA said in its statement.

“This final list of low-priority chemicals will allow EPA to focus its risk evaluation efforts on the chemicals that could significantly impact public health and the environment.”

The 20 substances designated low priority are:

  • 1-Butanol, 3-methoxy-, 1-acetate;
  • D-gluco-Heptonic acid, sodium salt (1:1), (2.xi.)-;
  • D-Gluconic acid;
  • D-Gluconic acid, calcium salt (2:1);
  • D-Gluconic acid, .delta.-lactone;
  • D-Gluconic acid, potassium salt (1:1);
  • D-Gluconic acid, sodium salt (1:1);
  • Decanedioic acid, 1,10-dibutyl ester;
  • 1-Docosanol;
  • 1-Eicosanol;
  • 1,2-Hexanediol;
  • 1-Octadecanol;
  • Propanol, [2-(2-butoxymethylethoxy)methylethoxy]-;
  • Propanedioic acid, 1,3-diethyl ester;
  • Propanedioic acid, 1,3-dimethyl ester;
  • Propanol, 1(or 2)-(2-methoxymethylethoxy)-, acetate;
  • Propanol, [(1-methyl-1,2-ethanediyl)bis(oxy)]bis-;
  • 2-Propanol, 1,1'-oxybis-;
  • Propanol, oxybis-; and
  • Tetracosane, 2,6,10,15,19,23-hexamethyl-.

Last month, the EPA finalized its list of 20 high-priority chemicals, which are now set to undergo risk evaluations.

   

Tagged categories: EPA; EPA; Government; Health & Safety; Health and safety; NA; North America; Regulations; Safety

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