On June 26, 2015 Chemistry World, the print and online magazine of the Royal Society of Chemistry, published an article about the reform bill to update the U.S. Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). On June 23, 2015 the U.S. House of Representatives approved the reform bill with a clear vote of 398 to 1. Chemical industry groups such as the American Chemistry Council (ACC) applauded the House for passing the TSCA reform bill. The reformed act will “build confidence in the U.S. chemical regulatory system, protect human health and the environment, and address the commercial and competitive needs of the U.S. chemical industry and the national economy”, according to the ACC. Environmental protection and public health advocacy groups such as the non-profit organization Environmental Working Group (EWG) expressed concern over the House’s decision. The reform bill “has an untested and ambiguous safety standard” and it would “allow chemical companies to pay for quick reviews and approval of their favorite chemicals”, the EWG stated. The U.S. Senate will vote on its version of the TSCA reform bill in July 2015.
The current TSCA reform bill, also known as the Udall-Vitter bill, has previously been criticized for containing serious flaws (FPF reported) and being driven by the chemical industry (FPF reported). While TSCA regulates chemicals in everyday consumer products, it does not cover food contact materials (FCMs). However, several substances that are used in FCMs are also used in other types of products affected by TSCA.
Chemistry World (June 26, 2015). “Chemical reform bill advances in US Congress.”
ACC (June 23, 2015). “ACC applauds house passage of TSCA reform bill, encourages senate to follow suit.”
Plastics News (June 23, 2015). “House overwhelmingly approves TSCA reform.”
Rick Hind (June 15, 2015). “Rick Hind: Udall bill would weaken chemical safety standards.” Las Cruces Sun-News
Devin Henry (June 3, 2015). “House panel approves toxic chemical safety bill.” The Hill
Plastics News (June 3, 2015). “House committee approves updated TSCA.”