In an article published on December 17, 2015 by the magazine Science, journalist Puneet Kollipara reports on the U.S. Senate’s agreement on a bill to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976. On a voice vote, the Senate unanimously approved the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, also referred to as the Udall-Vitter bill (FPF reported). The reform bill would grant more authority to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to request testing of chemicals’ safety and restrict their use, Kollipara writes. Also, the Udall-Vitter bill would create uniform national safety standards and possibly override more stringent state regulations on toxic chemicals. The U.S. House of Representatives approved its version of the TSCA reform bill already in June 2015 (FPF reported). The House and Senate will now have to reconcile the two versions of the bill before it can be enacted into law.
The American Chemistry Council (ACC) welcomes the Senate bill stating that it is “a watershed moment in the history of U.S. environmental legislation.” Previously, the Udall-Vitter bill has been criticized by environmental and labor organizations (FPF reported) and its authorship has been questioned due to suspected involvement of the ACC (FPF reported).
Puneet Kollipara (December 17, 2015). “After rocky road, U.S. Senate passes landmark chemical law overhaul.” Science
ACC (December 17, 2015). “ACC lauds passage of Senate bill to reform TSCA.”
EDFAction (December 17, 2015). “EDFAction hails Senate passage of chemical safety reform.”
Gayle S. Putrich (December 17, 2015). “U.S. Senate passes TSCA reform.” Plastics News
Chelsea Harvey (December 19, 2015). “A major chemical safety bill could become law by early next year. Here’s what you should know.” The Washington Post