On June 22, 2017, the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) issued its rule for prioritizing chemical substances for purposes of risk evaluation, as required by the amended Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). The rule was published in the Federal Register on July 20, 2017.
Under the amended TSCA, US EPA is required to prioritize chemical substances on the TSCA Inventory as “high priority” or “low priority.” US EPA then must conduct risk evaluations on the high-priority substances.
The rule sets forth a three-step process that US EPA will follow for prioritizing chemical substances on the TSCA Inventory: (1) initiation; (2) proposed designation; and (3) final designation. Once formally initiated (Step 1), the prioritization process must last at least nine months, but cannot last longer than 12 months.