The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed a rule to require electronic reporting for certain information submitted to the agency under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), including chemicals used in packaging.The action is an important milestone in the agency's effort to increase transparency and public access to chemical information to help Americans protect their health and environment. Electronic reporting will increase the speed with which EPA can make information publicly available, increase accuracy, and provide the public with quick and easier access to chemical information.
"Administrator Lisa P. Jackson is committed to strengthening EPA's chemicals management program and increasing the public's access to chemical information," says Jim Jones, acting assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. "The agency is also committed to reducing reporting burdens and paper-based reporting in favor of electronic reporting. These measures will streamline the reporting process and reduce the administrative costs."
Today's proposed rule would require electronic reporting rather than paper-based reporting for various TSCA actions including submission of information relating to chemical testing, health and safety studies, and other information. When final, EPA will only accept data, reports, and other information submitted through EPA's Central Data Exchange, a centralized portal that enables streamlined, electronic submission of data via the Internet. The agency will be soliciting comments on this proposed rule for 60 days.
Over the coming months, the agency will offer a number of opportunities for potential users to become familiar with the new requirements. These opportunities will include an initial webinar to introduce the web-based electronic reporting tool, follow-up webinars and testing of specific applications, and opportunities for submitters and others to provide feedback to the agency on their experiences using the tool before its release.
For more information on the proposed rule: www.epa.gov/oppt/chemtest/
For more information on the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics' (OPPT) increasing transparency efforts: www.epa.gov/oppt/existingchemicals/pubs/transparency.html