EPA Releases First Major Update to Chemicals List in 40 Years

Feb 22, 2019 | Michelle Shapiro

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released an update of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Inventory listing the chemicals that are actively being manufactured, processed and imported in the United States.

A key result of the update is that less than half of the total number of chemicals on the current TSCA Inventory (47 percent or 40,655 of the 86,228 chemicals) are currently in commerce. As the result of a tremendous effort on behalf of thousands of stakeholders and manufacturers from across the country, this information will help EPA focus risk evaluation efforts on chemicals that are still on the market.

As recently as 2018, the TSCA Inventory showed over 86,000 chemicals available for commercial production and use in the U.S. Until this update, it was not known which of these chemicals on the TSCA Inventory were actually in commerce. Under amended TSCA – The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21 Century Act – EPA was required to update the list and designate which chemicals are active or inactive in U.S. commerce.

More than 80 percent (32,898) of the chemicals in commerce have identities that are not Confidential Business Information (CBI), increasing public access to additional information about them. For the less than 20 percent of the chemicals in commerce that have confidential identities, EPA is developing a rule outlining how the Agency will review and substantiate all CBI claims seeking to protect the specific chemical identities of substances on the confidential portion of the TSCA Inventory.

From August 11, 2017 through October 5, 2018, chemical manufacturers and processors provided information on which chemicals were manufactured, imported or processed in the U.S. over the past ten years, the period ending June 21, 2016. The agency received more than 90,000 responses, which represents a significant reporting effort by manufacturers, importers and processors.

To download the public version of the initial TSCA Inventory, get more information about the TSCA Inventory Notification (Active-Inactive) Requirements rule, or requirements to notify EPA going forward, click here.


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About Michelle Shapiro

Michelle Shapiro is a communication specialist for the Environmental Health & Disability team at NACCHO.

More posts by Michelle Shapiro

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