11 March 2002 22:10 [Source: ICIS news]
WASHINGTON (CNI)--The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed a rule Monday that would require companies to notify the agency before they import or manufacture any of 75 chemicals.
EPA said the proposal supplements a rule it proposed on 18 October 2000 and responds to new information the agency learned during the comment period for the earlier rulemaking.
EPA said it had thought that the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company (3M) was the only company supplying the chemicals covered under the proposed rule. However, the agency said it learned that some companies were importing the chemicals into the US from manufacturers other than 3M.
The 75 chemicals that would be covered under the new proposal are perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOSH), certain of its salts, perfluorooctanesulfonyl fluoride (POSF), and chemicals that are structurally similar to PFOSH and POSF.
EPA said it was proposing a significant new use rule (SNUR) for the chemicals because they may be converted during incineration into a category of compounds known as perfluorooctyl sulfonates (PFOS) that persist in the environment and have a tendency to bioaccumulate.
Under the proposed rule, beginning 1 January 2003 companies that import or manufacture any of the 75 chemicals would be required to give EPA 90 days notice before they begin those activities.
EPA said the notice would allow the agency to review the planned manufacture or importation and determine whether the public's health or the environment would be put at risk.
The proposal exempts a number of uses from the proposed notification requirement, including use of the chemicals as an additive in fire-resistant phosphate ester aviation hydraulic fluids.
The full text of the new proposed EPA SNUR can be found in today's issue of the Federal Register or online at:
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