Tag Archives: EPA

Now Effective: EPA’s Sewer Ban and (in some states) Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals

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Today, August 21, 2019, EPA’s Final Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals takes effect federally.  The sewer ban component of the new rule applies in all states.  Healthcare facilities are now prohibited from flushing hazardous waste pharmaceuticals, including DEA controlled substances and “pharmaceutical wastage” that are hazardous waste.  This sewering ban may drive many facilities to stop flushing pharmaceuticals entirely (even those that are not hazardous waste), given how complicated it is in practice for healthcare provides to determine which drugs are hazardous [...]Read more

Proposed New Definition of “Waters of the United States”

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The EPA and Department of the Army submitted their revised proposal to amend the definition of “waters of the United States” for purposes of establishing federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act. The public comment period on the revised proposal has opened and will close on April 15, 2019. The agencies will host a two-day public hearing on February 27 and 28, 2019. It appears the agencies intend to finalize the new rule this year. The proposed waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule is a result of the February 2017 presidential Executive Order that directed the agencies to review [...]Read more

Final Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Released

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On December 12, 2018, the EPA released its long-awaited Management for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule. The EPA addressed industry concerns by amending the hazardous waste listing for nicotine to exclude nicotine replacement therapies (NRTs) in this rulemaking, but challenges remain in the new management standards. Here are a few noteworthy takeaways as we continue to analyze the rule and its implications: The exclusion of NRTs is a big win … so long as states follow suit FDA-approved, over-the-counter NRTs (nicotine patches, gums, and lozenges) have been removed from the P075 hazardous [...]Read more

EPA Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule Delayed Until Feb. 2019

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The effective date of EPA’s Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule has been delayed from June 19, 2017 to February 19, 2019.  EPA issued a Final Rule on June 9 explaining that the 20-month delay will “allow EPA to conduct a reconsideration proceeding and to consider other issues that may benefit from additional comment.” [1] This delay—and the signal that EPA may be reviewing “other issues” with the original RMP Rule that may not have been affected by the now-delayed amendment—show that Pruitt’s EPA intends to act on its goal of minimizing regulatory burden on industry. Environmentalists, [...]Read more

EPA Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule Delayed Again

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EPA’s Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule continues to face an uncertain future, particularly given EPA Administrator Pruitt’s historical opposition.[1]  On March 16, EPA again stayed the effective date of the Rule and “will prepare a notice of proposed rulemaking in the near future” that will allow industry groups and the public an opportunity to comment again.[2]  This new notice and comment period could also allow EPA to scrap the new Rule altogether if it so desired.  What’s more, a coalition of GOP states are asking Administrator Pruitt to delay the Rule for an [...]Read more

EPA Facility Safety Rule (and Others) Delayed until March 21, 2017

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Yesterday, EPA posted a pre-publication version of a new final rule (the Delay Rule) delaying the effective date of the Risk Management Program (RMP) Facility Safety Rule until March 21, 2017.[1]  The RMP Rule is one of 30 regulations listed in the Delay Rule that have been published in the Federal Register but have not yet taken effect—so-called “Midnight Rules” promulgated at the end of the Obama administration.  As a result of the Delay Rule, the new effective date for all 30 Midnight Rules is now March 21, though EPA left open the possibility that effective dates could be further delayed. The [...]Read more

EPA Confirms Vehicle Emission Standards for 2022-2025

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As expected, on January 12, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its Final Determination affirming the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission standards for model year 2022-2025 light-duty vehicles.  While EPA had until April 1, 2018 to issue this Final Determination, it did so quickly,  less than two weeks following the close of the public comment period on the agency’s Proposed Determination, detailed in our prior blog here.  This Final Determination makes it much more difficult for the new administration to change course. EPA’s Final Determination was originally anticipated [...]Read more

EPA Final Facility Safety Rule Still Faces Uncertain Future

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Yesterday, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy signed the agency’s final Facility Safety Rule.[1]  The rule, which contains some significant changes from the draft version, will be published in the Federal Register within the next few weeks and will take effect 60 days after publication.  That is, if it is not somehow blocked. The final rule codifies many of the safety requirements in the draft rule, including consideration of inherently safer technology and third party audits after reportable releases.  It also includes notable changes to address security concerns raised both by industry and [...]Read more

EPA Releases CERCLA Financial Assurance Rule

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EPA has released its long-awaited proposed CERCLA financial assurance regulations for the hardrock mining industry.  When finalized, these regulations will serve as a model for financial assurance regulations for other industries. Also on December 1, EPA provided notice that its next target industries -  petroleum and coal products manufacturing; chemical manufacturing; and electric power generation, transmission, and distribution.  These developments have major implications for a multitude of companies—both in these industries and in industries that could be future targets. Here are some [...]Read more

EPA Provides Early Affirmation of Vehicle Emission Standards for 2022-2025

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On November 30, 2016, EPA issued a Proposed Determination as part of its Midterm Evaluation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission standards for model year 2022-2025 light-duty vehicles.  EPA has concluded, in this proposed adjudicatory determination, that these GHG standards, established in 2012, remain appropriate under the Clean Air Act (CAA).  EPA is required by regulation (40 CFR 86.1818-12(h)) to consider factors such as the availability and effectiveness of technology, appropriate lead time for technology, costs to manufacturers and consumers, and the feasibility and practicality of the standards [...]Read more