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Regulatory Analysis
We are continually updating our state and national regulatory analysis to help you keep up with the changing regs. See the updated section on the what's new page to find all of the topics.
Recent Regulatory Activity
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Compliance with most of EPA’s revised protection standard for agricultural workers is required by January 2, 2017.
While some states have been reluctant to develop strategies to comply with EPA’s Clean Power Plan (CPP) because the federal courts have yet to provide assurances that the plan is legal, other states have been deeply involved in compliance planning even before the CPP was made final.
As part of the U.S.-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC), EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) and Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) have issued their 2016 updated Work Plan (Plan).

The EPA recently held a series of public meetings to gain input from manufacturers, processors, and other stakeholders on how to craft regulations for three key areas addressed by the new TSCA legislation. Proposed regulations for the collection of fees, procedures for prioritizing chemicals for review, and procedures for conducting risk evaluations are expected by the end of 2016, with final rules to be issued by June 2017.

American Trucking Associations (ATA) responded with “cautious optimism” to the final federal Phase 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) and fuel-efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles.
Two Clean Air Act (CAA) provisions governing deadlines for submission of state implementation plans (SIPs) to bring areas into attainment with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM) were at the core of a recent decision by a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
Following the $14.7 billion penalty leveled against Volkswagen®, EPA’s $12 million settlement with Harley-Davidson, Inc., over the company’s alleged sale of illegal defeat devices for use on its motorcycles is significant enforcement action that highlights the government’s militant stance against vehicle manufacturers it asserts are violating the Clean Air Act (CAA).
EPA’s 30-member Science Advisory Board (SAB) has multiple concerns with the Agency’s June 2015 draft assessment of the impact of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water sources.
The lines of attack and defense are growing over EPA’s final standards to reduce methane emissions from new, reconstructed, and modified sources in the oil and natural gas (O&G) sector.
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has issued a final rule amending its hazardous materials regulations (HMRs) for rail tank cars carrying flammable liquids.

Because of the wide swath of fuels and chemical substances available, it is imperative for tank owners to ensure that the tank itself is compatible with the substance stored. Storing certain fuels that are incompatible with the tanks threatens the overall integrity of the UST.

In an order, a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit denied EPA’s request for an additional 6 months to take final action on its proposal to ban application of the pesticide chlorpyrifos on food crops.
In a joint statement, two former EPA administrators who served under Republican presidents said Donald Trump “was threatening to destroy a history of support for the environment dating back to Theodore Roosevelt.”
The beleaguered coal-mining industry suffered another indignity with the publication of a federal advisory indicating that states authorized to implement the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA) would be wise to not allow companies to rely on self-bonding to meet their obligation to have adequate financial resources to properly restore lands disturbed by surface-mining activities.
White Papers:
Security at the many thousands of U.S. facilities housing dangerous chemicals is an issue of such paramount importance that Congress has written into law a prohibition against employers retaliating against employees who report potential violations of federal chemical security regulations.
Not long after both parties in Congress united to pass a bill to increase EPA’s authority to regulate toxic chemicals in commerce, several Republican senators returned to form by charging that the Agency was abusing its power to enforce federal environmental laws.
In its recently published Aquatic Life Ambient Water Quality Criterion for Selenium—Freshwater, the EPA reminds stakeholders that the term water quality standards is used in two sections of the Clean Water Act (CWA).
Use this checklist to inspect your hazardous waste containers.
Use this checklist to inspect your hazardous waste containers.
Use this checklist to inspect your hazardous waste containers.
Use this checklist to inspect the area where you store your hazardous waste containers.
If we have an independent contractor come to our facility for 60 days each year and they have a 4000 gallon diesel tank that they set, our engineer says that we will need to add their tank to our plan or have them develop a plan. Other than having double wall tanks, how do you go about having secondary containment for a tank that is mobile?
Updated Documents
This talk discusses some of the hazards associated with working in a building or facility where asbestos is present, and it provides information that maintenance and custodial personnel and other employees can use to avoid asbestos exposure. This talk does not cover demolition, renovation, or abatement of asbestos-containing material (ACM).
This talk discusses the proper practices to follow when choosing, managing, and marking a container.
This document includes a decision tree that will help you determine if the requirements of the Directive apply to your product.
This toolbox talk will help underground storage tank operators include best management practices for release detection. Understanding your release detection system can minimize releases and help your business react quickly before major environmental and human health problems occur.
On June 22, 2016 President Obama signed into law the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, a bipartisan bill to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act.
EPA's implementation plan is intended to be a roadmap of major activities EPA will focus on during the initial year of implementation. It is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of all requirements in the new law.
EPA has provided answers to frequently asked questions pertaining to the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act.
During the development of TSCA Reform legislation, EPA published a document, titled The Essential Principles for Reform of Chemicals Management Legislation, detailing the agency's goals for updated TSCA legislation. Did they get what they wanted?
This flowchart details the EPA's timeline for evaluating existing chemicals under TSCA reform legislation. This flowchart is an excerpt from EPA's June 30, 2016 webinar, titled The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act: Overview.
This table details the EPA's milestones for implementing TSCA Reform requirements over the next 5 years. This table is an excerpt from the EPA's June 30, 2016 webinar, titled The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act: Overview.
This fact sheet explains the June 3, 2016, amendments to the Standards Of Performance For Crude Oil And Natural Gas Production, Transmission And Distribution (NSPS Subpart OOOO)
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (2/10/2015): Medical Surveillance for workers performing Class III asbestos work
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (12/1/2009): Drilling through asbestos-containing floor tile
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (6/12/2009): Comprehensive asbestos building surveys
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (3/1/2007): Clarification of decontamination procedures for employees involved in Class I asbestos work
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (7/13/2009): Clarification on number of employees required for glovebag removal operations
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (7/10/2008): Refresher training requirements for Class III asbestos work and training for excavations disturbing soil with ACM
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (9/5/2005): Building owner's requirement to determine and communicate the hazards from installed ACM and PACM
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (2/1/2005): Definition of "regulated area"
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (11/24/2003): Compliance requirements for renovation work involving material containing less than 1% asbestos
OSHA Letter of Interpretation (10/27/2003): Application of construction standard to demolition operations involving material less than 1% asbestos
The purpose of this document is to outline particular technical approaches and methods to help EPA analysts (including economists, risk assessors, and others) analyze potential environmental justice concerns for regulatory actions.
Use this Tips and Considerations guide with regulatory considerations and written Plan tips to help you customize the prewritten HAZWOPER Health and Safety Plan.
Regulatory Analysis:
Air emissions permits are divided into two distinct categories: construction permits and operating permits. The applicability of various permitting programs within each category is dependent on the type and quantity of the pollutants emitted, the attainment status of the area where the source is located, and the date the source was constructed or modified. The quantity of emissions from a source will determine whether the source can be classified as a major source or if changes at the source can be classified as a major modification. Major sources must comply with federal construction and operating permit programs, most of which are administered at the state or local level.
Technological advances have created a dependence on electronic products both at home and in the workplace. As a result, the wastestream of used electronics waste is growing rapidly throughout the United States and the world. Electronic equipment, such as television screens, computers, DVD players, copying machines, circuit boards, batteries, cathode ray tubes, tablets and cell phones, can contain hazardous materials such as lead, mercury, cadmium, and hexavalent chromium.
Pretreatment standards are derived from a variety of sources. The Clean Water Act (CWA) requires the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to promulgate pretreatment standards and requirements with the purpose of reducing the level of pollutants discharged by industry and other nondomestic wastewater sources into municipal storm sewer systems. The EPA has established general and specific prohibited discharge standards that are applicable to all nondomestic users and categorical general pretreatment regulations that require publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) to develop local limits when necessary to implement the prohibited discharge standards. Limits may be met by industrial sources through pollution prevention techniques (product substitution, recycling, and reuse of materials), best management practices, or treatment of the wastewater. States and POTWs have the option of establishing more stringent requirements.
The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) was enacted to address the increasing problems of toxic substances. Through the provisions of TSCA, the EPA can collect or require the development of information about the toxicity of particular chemicals and the extent to which people and the environment are exposed to them. Such information allows the EPA to assess whether the chemicals pose unreasonable risks to humans and the environment. TSCA provides the basis for EPA's New and Existing Chemicals programs and the basis for national programs for major chemicals of concern, such as asbestos, lead, mercury, and radon, and the foundation for other TSCA programs, such as addressing environmental issues in schools, including energy efficiency under TSCA Title V.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules define a stormwater discharge associated with industrial activity as "the discharge from any conveyance ... used for collecting and conveying stormwater and which is directly related to manufacturing, processing or raw materials storage areas at an industrial plant.
This analysis describes the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) hazard communication (HazCom), or worker "right-to-know," requirements for general industry and construction workplaces, including OSHA's adoption of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). OSHA's HazCom rule for the construction industry adopts the general industry rule by reference.
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• Are not large enough for entering and working
• Have limited or restricted means of entry or exit
• Are not designed for continuous worker occupancy
• Contain or may potentially contain a hazardous atmosphere