Mobile Menu - OpenMobile Menu - Closed

Welcome to Congressman Larry Bucshon

Representing the 8th District of Indiana

Dr. Bucshon’s Floor Speech on Chemical Safety Modernization Bill

June 23, 2015
Press Release

(WASHINGTON, DC) – On Tuesday, Eighth District Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D. spoke on the House floor in support of H.R. 2576, The TSCA Modernization Act.  H.R. 2576 is a bipartisan measure that will modernize and reform the decades-old Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) first implemented in 1976 to manage hazardous chemicals. 

Video of the speech can be accessed here - https://youtu.be/0CJClREiAsg and full text is included below: 

“Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H.R. 2576, the ‘TSCA Modernization Act of 2015,’ which updates the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) of 1976. 

“This legislation will benefit the Eighth District of Indiana and our nation by improving the regulation of chemicals in commerce. 

“Indiana’s 8th district has a strong and diverse manufacturing sector, including plastics, fertilizer production, automobiles, and medical devices, which play pivotal roles in the local and state economy. 

“H.R. 2576 will improve the EPA’s outdated regulatory process for these industries and manufacturers, foster conditions for stronger interstate commerce, and ensure robust protections for public health and the environment. 

“I urge my colleagues to support this important legislation.”

H.R. 2576 WILL: 

  • Provide EPA the tools to ensure chemicals in commerce are safer for consumers. 

  • Create a new system for EPA to evaluate and manage risks associated with chemicals already on the market: 

    • Either EPA or a manufacturer (who is willing to pay the cost) may designate a chemical for risk evaluation.

    • The risk evaluation must stand up to rigorous scientific standards set out in the legislation.

    • If unreasonable risk is determined, EPA must immediately draft a rule to manage the risk.

  • Set deadlines for EPA to take action:

    • Risk evaluations must be completed within 3 years.

    • Risk management rules must follow completion of risk evaluations by 90 days.

  • Ensure user fees paid to EPA for specific purposes are used just for those purposes:

    • User fees will be deposited in a separate fund in the Treasury, and the fees charged and collected will match the cost of carrying out the specific purposes

  • Provide limited preemption of state law:

    • Once EPA makes a final decision on a chemical, either a new rule or a determination that it poses no unreasonable risk, EPA action would apply in all states

    • Prior state laws that do not conflict with TSCA, and private rights of action under tort or contract law, are preserved

  • Maintain protection of confidential business information:

    • Certain state, local, and tribal government officials and health care professionals will now have access

    • Confidentiality claims must be reclaimed after ten years

    • Exemption from CBI protection for health and safety studies does not include disclosure of confidential chemical formulas

BACKGROUND: 

The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) was enacted in 1976 to manage hazardous chemicals in commerce. However, TSCA has proven to be ineffective in providing adequate protections and facilitating U.S. chemical manufacturing and use – this is particularly true today, in the face of industry advancements and increased interstate commerce. Modernization of the law is necessary to improve protections for public health and the environment, to provide the public greater confidence in the safety of U.S. chemicals, and to promote further innovation and economic growth.