California Proposition 65 Regulations Overhaul

Written by
The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) proposes to repeal existing regulations and replace them with newer regulations to further the “right-to-know” purpose of the Proposition 65 statute and provide more specific guidance on the content of safe harbor warnings. In addition, the proposed regulations add a specific section addressing the relative responsibilities of providing warnings for businesses in the chain of commerce versus retail sellers of a given product. Originally adopted in 1988, Proposition 65 regulations require California businesses to provide [...]Read more

DOJ Redoubles Efforts to Prosecute Workplace Violations as Environmental Crimes

Written by
Reporting that 13 workers in America die each day on the job due to injuries and 150 workers succumb to exposure to carcinogens and other toxic and hazardous substances while working, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) is seeking to increase deterrence of crimes that put the lives and the health of workers at risk. Given the troubling statistics, the DOJ is redoubling joint efforts between its Environment and Natural Resources Division and the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other agencies to hold accountable [...]Read more

TSCA Reform Passes Senate Unanimously

Written by and
Historic overhaul of the primary law governing the safety of chemical products in the U.S.—the Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”)—has, after long delay, passed in the Senate. With agreement from all sides that the law is long overdue for modernization and reform, lawmakers have been working for years to update and reform TSCA.  Enacted in 1976, TSCA has never been significantly amended and the current legislation is poised to massively overhaul U.S. EPA’s authority over chemicals in commerce. In June 2015, the House of Representatives passed the bipartisan TSCA Modernization Act [...]Read more

After years of starts and stops, OEHHA commences new rulemaking to change the Prop 65 product label requirements

Written by and
After nearly a year of heavy industry opposition and objections to the proposed draft regulations requiring all manufacturers selling goods in California to change their Prop 65 product label warnings, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) has announced that it will not meet its legal obligation to produce a final regulation on product warning requirements by January 19, 2016.   Instead, OEHHA will withdraw its previous proposed rulemaking, issued in January of this year, and open an entirely new rulemaking record separate and apart from that engaged in [...]Read more

EPA Extends Comment Period for Proposed RCRA Rules

Written by
EPA announced this morning that it extended the comment period for both the Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Proposed Rule and the Hazardous Waste Generators Improvements Proposed Rule until December 24, 2015, according to the pre-publication notices here and here.  All healthcare facilities, pharmaceutical reverse distributors and other hazardous waste generators should read the proposed rules, and each should analyze the impacts it will have on its operations and waste management practices.  The proposed rules have broad-reaching implications, and generators should provide [...]Read more

California Releases its First Draft of its Alternatives Analysis Guide (AA Guide)

Written by
All manufacturers and sellers of consumer products into California should take note.    California has just released its first draft of stage one of its Alternatives Analysis Guide (AA Guide).  You can read all 103 pages here. If your product is selected as a “priority product” under the California Safer Consumer Product Regulations, then your company will be required to prepare and submit for public review an alternatives analysis (AA).  Learn more here, here or here. An AA is a brand new paperwork beast.  It is in parts a large CEQA/NEPA-type document, in parts a hazard assessment, [...]Read more

EPA Released its Proposed Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule

Written by
Today, EPA released its proposed Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule.  A pre-publication copy is available here. The proposed rule, if finalized, will add a subpart P under 40 CFR part 266, which applies to the management of hazardous waste (HW) pharmaceuticals at healthcare facilities and pharmaceutical reverse distributors.  All pharmaceutical reverse distributors will be required to manage HW pharmaceuticals under this subpart, not 40 CFR part 262.  Subpart P creates a new category of hazardous waste entities, pharmaceutical reverse distributors – such entities [...]Read more

OEHHA Releases New Prop 65 Proposals that Will Increase Label Obligations for Businesses Selling Products into California, Particularly for Food Producers and Sellers

Written by and
On Friday, August 28, 2015, the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) released four pre-regulatory proposals under Prop 65 that, if passed, would likely significantly expand the overall obligations of certain businesses to meet Prop 65 warning label requirements.  Prop 65, known officially as The Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, requires businesses to provide warnings for an exposure to a listed chemical known by the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity. Specifically, the OEHHA pre-regulatory proposals released Friday would [...]Read more

New Proposals from California Governor: Will CEQA Be Fixed? Or Will it Get More Complex and Unwieldy?

Written by
The California Governor’s Office is seeking input on their proposals to update the CEQA Guidelines by October 12, 2015.   They have released a discussion draft – which is a pre-regulatory process to get input on some of the proposals before actually proposing them in a formal rulemaking.   A copy of the preliminary discussion draft, along with other background information, is available here: http://opr.ca.gov/s_ceqaguidelines.php. The CEQA Guidelines provide the regulatory rules for the preparation of environmental review documents for all public and private development proposals (e.g., [...]Read more

California Expands Oil Spill Prevention Regulation Inland: Releases Emergency Regs for OSRO Ratings

Written by and
On Friday, July 10, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) released updated emergency Oil Spill Response Organization (ORSO) Rating regulations as part of OSPR’s expanded authority under SB 861. SB 861, passed through the California legislature in June of last year, extends oil spill protections previously available only to California’s coastal and marine waters to all inland waters of the state.  The bill was passed in direct response to rising shipments of crude oil and petroleum products across state lands.  Among other changes, [...]Read more