Industry backs newest proposal to update chemical regulations

By Gayle S. Putrich
Staff Reporter

Published: March 5, 2014 12:47 pm ET
Updated: March 5, 2014 12:50 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, Materials, United States
Companies & Associations American Chemistry Council

WASHINGTON — Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) is the latest member of Congress to step up to the plate to take a swing at chemical regulation reform, releasing a "discussion draft" of his bill, the Chemicals in Commerce Act (CICA) to mixed reaction from industry and environmental groups alike.

The effort to update the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) would grant the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency authority to designate chemicals as low or high priority, with high-priority chemicals getting a "rigorous scientific examination." The bill would let states take action on specific chemicals but preempt state rules when EPA makes a specific ruling on the safety of a chemical.

"It would create a common sense prioritization and evaluation program for all existing chemicals in commerce and establish a uniform federal standard to help better facilitate interstate commerce in chemicals and other downstream U.S. manufactured goods," said a House Energy and Commerce news release on the measure, which reads as just as much a commerce bill as it is a chemical regulation effort.

Shimkus said he plans to hold two hearings on the proposed bill, on top of the five his Environment and Economy Subcommittee has already held on what does and doesn't work well under TSCA.

"This discussion draft begins the legislative phase of the committee's work and I am hopeful we can get something across the finish line with strong bipartisan support," he said.

The draft bill already has the support of several plastics-related industry groups, ranging from the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers to the American Chemistry Council.

"The balanced approach taken in the draft Chemicals in Commerce Act will provide Americans with more confidence in the safety of chemicals, while at the same time encouraging innovation, economic growth and job creation by U.S. manufacturers," said ACC CEO Cal Dooley in a news release.

Critics are already lining up as well, saying the bill kowtows to industry without protecting humans or the environment, including the Center for Environmental Health, the Environmental Working Group, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families initiative.

"The draft ignores nearly every recommendation for reform made by health professionals, environmental experts, and advocates for families dealing with cancer, autism, infertility and other health problems linked to chemical exposure, but it adopts the wish list of oil and chemical companies like Dow and ExxonMobil," said Andy Igrejas, director of Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families, via email.

The House bill would be a companion to the Senate's Chemical Safety Improvement Act (CSIA), proposed last May as a compromise bill after more than a decade of disagreements on revamping TSCA. While the Senate measure has drawn more than 25 cosponsors from both sides of the aisle, it remains parked in committee.


Comments

Industry backs newest proposal to update chemical regulations

By Gayle S. Putrich
Staff Reporter

Published: March 5, 2014 12:47 pm ET
Updated: March 5, 2014 12:50 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Report: Brands are falling short on packaging sustainability

January 29, 2015 5:19 pm ET

Packaging in general, and plastic packaging in particular, has a long way to go in terms of recycling, according to a pair of environmental groups.    More

Image

2014 sees modest sales increase, but profit decrease, for Dow Chemical

January 29, 2015 4:20 pm ET

Dow Chemical Co. delivered modest sales growth in 2014, but the firm's profit took a tumble.    More

Image

Resin prices continuing to tumble

January 29, 2015 2:24 pm ET

The ongoing slide in crude oil prices is taking commodity resin prices down as well.    More

Image

Lund adds to aftermarket auto products portfolio with buy of Bushwacker

January 29, 2015 2:49 pm ET

Lund International Inc. has expanded its portfolio of plastic aftermarket vehicle accessories by acquiring Bushwacker Inc.    More

Image

Materials firms look for stock rebound

January 29, 2015 1:52 pm ET

DuPont Co., A. Schulman Inc. and Rogers Corp. thrived amid the stock market chaos of 2014, but the other 12 publicly held materials firms tracked by P...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Automotive: Innovation & Emerging Trends

This special report newly released by PN and sponsored by The Conair Group examines current trends in the use of plastics in automotive, materials innovations and the changing landscape. It includes a review of legislative/regulatory activity impacting vehicle development and lightweighting, market opportunities & challenges for mold and toolmakers, innovative design strategies being implemented by major OEMs and suppliers, as well as a review of key indicators in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and China.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molding Market Analysis & Processor Rankings

Plastics News BUNDLED package contains our in-depth Market Analysis of the Injection Molding segment. You will gain keen insight on current trends and our economic outlook.

As a BONUS this includes PN's updated 2014 database of North American Injection Molders RANKED by sales volume. Sort, merge, mail & prospect by end market, materials processed, region, # of plants and more.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events