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Highlights from EPA’s Preparatory Meeting for Experts Selected to Serve as Letter Peer Reviewers for Its Exposure and Use Assessment and Human Health and Environmental Hazard Summary for Five PBTs

On June 25, 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) held a preparatory meeting for experts selected to serve as letter peer reviewers for EPA's Exposure and Use Assessment and Human Health and Environmental Hazard Summary for five persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals.  A list of those chemicals is available here.  Although the meeting was scheduled for four hours, it adjourned after only two hours, as there were only a few questions from peer reviewers and only two outside stakeholders providing oral comments.  Below are some highlights/takeaways from the meeting:

  • All five PBT chemicals being reviewed scored high for hazard;

  • Two PBT chemicals were pulled from EPA action under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Section 6 because manufacturers requested risk evaluations for them prior to the September 19, 2016, deadline;

  • Four of the PBT chemicals scored high or moderate for exposure; one scored low (pentachlorothiophenol (PCTP));

  • For exposure assessment, EPA split up information as “core exposure data” or “supplemental exposure data”:  core exposure data would be environmental data, monitoring, biomonitoring, modeled concentrations, or modeled dose; and supplemental exposure data would be environmental fate, engineering data, or other information related to exposure information or pathways;

  • EPA identified exposure scenarios -- looking at source/use, environmental pathways, and receptors;

  • EPA did not conduct any new modeling on the chemicals but did use modeled data from published literature;

  • EPA did not conduct an exhaustive literature search, review, or assessment of hazard data, it used data readily available, as described in the Human Health and Environmental Hazard Summary; the EPA document “Supplemental Information for the Exposure and Use Assessment of Five Persistent, Bioaccumulative and Toxic Chemicals” outlines the literature search process used for exposure data; and

  • Exposure scenarios include both quantitative and qualitative information.

No written comments were submitted prior to the peer review webinar. Only three people signed up for oral comments, and one was not present online.  The two public commenters noted concerns regarding the likelihood of exposure, including the potential for accidental exposures; the lack of EPA focus on susceptible subpopulations; EPA’s intent not to address exposures that are already regulated under other EPA programs; and the need to assess the risk of bias.

Per the language in amended TSCA, EPA must issue risk management proposals to reduce exposures to the extent practicable by June 19, 2019.

Any public comments submitted by July 23, 2018, will be shared with peer reviewers. Comments submitted between July 23, 2018, and August 17, 2018, will be available to EPA for consideration.  All comments are due by August 17, 2018.  A recording of the webinar, slides, and other materials from the meeting will be posted in Docket EPA-HQ-OPPT-2018-0314.  There are currently six supporting documents posted:

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Kathleen Roberts, Bergeson Campbell, Consortia Management, industry group resource,  Toxic Substance Control Act regulations, cost effective manager leader
Vice President, B&C® Consortia Management, L.L.C.

Kathleen M. Roberts is Vice President of B&C® Consortia Management, L.L.C. (BCCM), an affiliate of Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®). In her leadership role at BCCM, Ms. Roberts is an essential resource for industry groups, providing cost effective management support and administrative services for multiple industry consortia engaged in advocacy, research, public outreach, and communication activities. In addition, Ms. Roberts serves as a non-attorney professional with B&C, addressing domestic and international chemical control...

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Jason Johnston, Bergeson Campbel Law Firm, Senior Scientist
Senior Scientist

Jason E. Johnston, M.S., a Senior Scientist with Bergeson & Campbell, P.C., has more than 25 years of experience in the areas of exposure and risk assessment. Mr. Johnston has conducted multiple exposure assessments in residential, occupational, hazardous waste, and consumer product settings in the U.S., Canada, European Union (EU), and South America. He is well-suited to support clients before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), state regulatory agencies, and international regulatory authorities when exposure issues are raised in the context of agricultural and consumer pesticide registration and re-registration. Mr. Johnston holds two Master of Science (MS) degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one in Chemical Engineering Practice and one in Technology and Policy.

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Sheryl Dolan, Senior Regulatory Consultant, Toxic Substance Control Act, Nanoscale Chemicals, Bergeson and Campbell Law Firm
Senior Regulatory Consultant

Sheryl Dolan is an excellent asset to clients who have issues in chemical regulation, registration, and compliance management matters. She works with manufacturers of conventional and nanoscale chemicals, and industrial and consumer products, including intergeneric microorganisms, for compliance with requirements under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). She also works with registrants of agricultural and other conventional pesticides, antimicrobial products, biopesticides, and plant regulators to register and manage compliance with requirements under the Federal...

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Margaret Graham, Environmental Science and Policy Paralegal, Bergeson Campbell Law firm
Paralegal

Margaret R. Graham (Maggie), a paralegal with Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®), holds a Masters degree in Environmental Science and Policy, and has over a decade of paralegal experience, including eight years focused in federal regulatory law.  Her understanding of environmental policy and the administrative and legislative process involved in regulatory compliance makes her an invaluable resource to B&C staff and clients, who rely on her research, project management, and writing and editing skills to complete efficiently briefs, pleadings, and other documents.

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