WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released the first set of Chemical Action Plans (CAPs). The plans are part of a previously announced plan for enhancing chemicals management under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). The four chemicals included in the plans are phthalates, short-chain chlorinated paraffins, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and perfluorinated chemicals, including PFOA.

The EPA stated in a press release, “For the first time, EPA intends to establish a Chemicals of Concern list and is beginning a process that may lead to regulations requiring significant risk reduction measures to protect human health and the environment. The agency’s actions represent its determination to use its authority under the existing Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to the fullest extent possible, recognizing EPA’s strong belief that the 1976 law is both outdated and in need of reform.”

The EPA’s action plans will: summarize available hazard, exposure and use information; outline the risks that each chemical may present; and identify the specific steps the agency is taking to address those concerns.

Commenting on the EPA’s announcement, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) expressed concern over issues of transparency in the selection process and uncertainty in the scientific basis of the selection of chemicals.

The EPA also announced that benzidine dyes and pigments, and bisphenol A are currently in the action plan development process.