“Sweeping regulatory overhaul at this time could have disastrous consequences,” said SOCMA president Joe Acker. “Most manufacturing industries in America rely on continued supply of chemicals for their products. Poorly planned drastic changes to chemicals policy would severely impact the integrity of the supply chain at a time when manufacturing least needs another financial hit.”
EPA administrator Lisa Jackson has expressed confidence in the new chemicals program, a particularly successful portion of TSCA, and interest in further developing efforts for existing chemicals. In a position released earlier this year, SOCMA emphasized the need to develop the existing regulatory framework, particularly the fledgling Chemicals Assessment and Management Program (ChAMP). SOCMA also believes that programs such as the EU’s Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACh) give the U.S. the chance to leverage data and use read-across to obtain information without enacting sweeping changes domestically. Such development would continue the information-gathering process about chemicals in commerce without stifling the innovation and sustainability of the American chemical industry. Additionally, TSCA section 5 has enabled innovation, while a program like REACh would stifle it by consuming resources that would otherwise be dedicated to innovation.
“Any evaluation of TSCA must recognize that the chemical industry’s innovation has played a huge part in giving the United States one of the highest standards of living in the world, even as overall indices of public health and environmental quality have improved,” said SOCMA in its position statement. “SOCMA believes this combined success has been achieved due to TSCA’s flexibility.”
SOCMA’s call to action comes shortly after the release of a survey of the Society of Toxicology, which concluded that most professional toxicologists believe the risks posed by most chemicals in commerce are drastically overstated by the environmental lobby and the media, both drivers of the current push to replace TSCA with much more onerous regulation.
To read SOCMA’s full position on TSCA reform, click here.
SOCMA is the leading trade association, serving the batch, custom, and specialty chemical industry since 1921. SOCMA’s nearly 300 members employ more than 100,000 workers across the country and produce 50,000 products valued at $60 billion annually. For more information, visit www.socma.com.