Trade secret protection for mandatory California consumer product survey?

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Every company listed on a label of a consumer or commercial product sold or supplied for use in California in 2013 must complete and submit a survey to the California Air Resources Board by March 2, 2015.  Makers of hair sprays, cleaning products, floor waxes, insecticides, paints, as well as numerous other categories of products must submit their data in CARB’s electronic survey system, called the Consumer Product Reporting Tool (CPRT) and for formulators, the CPRT-F.  See Appendix A in the survey instructions for a full list of product categories.  The survey is unprecedented in its scope [...]Read more

DEA Releases Regulations Implementing the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act

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The Department of Justice (DOJ), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) released a final rule that implements the Secure and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, also referred to as the “Disposal Act.” The new regulations take effect on October 9, 2014. They provide additional options for ultimate users to dispose of controlled substances, and create a voluntary role for industry registrants, i.e. “collectors,” which are entities that ultimate users can transfer controlled substances to for disposal. An “ultimate user” includes a person a controlled substance is prescribed to; [...]Read more

Makers of Beauty, Hygiene, Furniture, Cleaning, Clothing, Fishing, Office Machinery and Building Products – GET READY! Future Regulated Product Categories Selected by California

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Under the California Safer Consumer Product Regulations, maker of products that are selected as “priority products” will be invited to participate in a grueling paperwork-laden regulatory process, that involves multiple notifications, alternatives analyses, chemical hazard and environmental assessments for the entire lifecycle of making their product from raw material extraction, manufacturing, transportation, use by consumer and ultimate disposal of product. Read more about the requirements here or here. On September 12, 2014, California released the product categories that will be the [...]Read more

EPA Opens Environmental Crimes Office in North Dakota

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) opened a Criminal Investigation Division (CID) office in North Dakota at the end of July. North Dakota has seen its oil production increase to over 1 million barrels a day over the last decade. The Bakken shale, located in the western part of the state, holds almost 11 billion barrels of oil, and production is increasing. EPA’s office is staffed by four agents who plan to investigate operations in the state’s western oil patch, ranging from drilling rigs to disposal sites and everything in between. EPA’s closest offices have been in Montana and Colorado [...]Read more

BOEM Issues ANPR to Update Financial Assurance Requirements for Outer Continental Shelf Operations

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The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) issued an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) on Risk Management, Financial Assurance, and Loss Prevention in an effort to update its financial assurance regulations for industrial operations on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). BOEM intends to develop more robust financial assurance requirements to address what the agency perceives as increasingly complex financial, commercial, functional, and business risks involving leases, Rights-of-Use and Easements (RUEs), Pipeline Rights-of-Way (ROWs) and facilities on the OCS. BOEM is soliciting [...]Read more

DTSC to Reschedule Workshops

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The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) had scheduled two workshops for earlier this month to review its draft Priority Products Work Plan, but they were postponed. The draft work plan has yet to be released and is the reason behind postponing the workshops. DTSC hopes to release the draft work plan in September and schedule the workshops following its release to allow ample time for stakeholders to review the work plan and be prepared for the workshops. We will provide more details on the draft work plan and the new dates for the workshops when they are released. [...]Read more

EPA Releases Chemical Risk Assessments

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released the final risk assessments for dichloromethane (DCM), antimony trioxide (ATO), and 1,3,4,6,7,8-Hexahydro-4,6,6,7,8,8,-hexamethylcyclopenta-[γ]-2-benzopyran (HHCB). The risk assessment conducted on DCM, a chemical widely used in paint stripping products, determined that there are health risks to workers and consumers who use these products and to other people in the workplace or residences where it is used. EPA is in the process of considering whether to implement voluntary or regulatory actions to address the concerns that DCM presents. The agency [...]Read more

More Gluten-Free Micro-Brews in our Future?

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Final Rule last August establishing a federal standard for “gluten-free” labeling of foods. That standard went into effect on August 5, 2014, except for fermented and hydrolyzed foods (such as beers made from gluten-containing grains, malt vinegars, and soy sauce). FDA said it would address a gluten-free standard for those products in a separate rulemaking commencing later this year because the agency at that time was not aware of a scientifically valid test method that could accurately quantify the gluten content of fermented foods. FDA [...]Read more

California Supreme Court: Granting License to Ignore CEQA?

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The California Supreme Court recently issued a ruling in the case of Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance v. Superior Court (Wal-Mart), which raised the question does the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) apply to local voter initiatives if the government adopts the initiative without placing it on the ballot for a special election. Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance (TJSBA) filed the suit arguing that the City of Sonora, California violated CEQA went it came to approval of a Wal-Mart expansion project without conducting a CEQA review. The Supreme Court unanimously rejected [...]Read more