ACA is hosting a free webinar for its members on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) new Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule requirements and electronic reporting tool. ACA’s Virtual Learning Conference will take place on Feb. 15, from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm EST, and will be conducted by Martha Marrapese and Amanda Price of the international law firm Keller and Heckman. The focus of the new CDR information requirements is for chemical manufacturers and chemical importers, and mandates the use of new and complex electronic (online) reporting tools.
The role of paint manufacturers as formulators (or chemical processors) is to respond to raw material supplier requests for supportive information on processing activities, including any of the new areas on recycling or reclamation efforts.
Last August EPA issued the final Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule, previously referred to as the Inventory Update Reporting (IUR) Modifications Rule. It expanded the requirements for reporting data on production volume, use, and exposure for many chemicals widely used in commerce, and makes electronic reporting mandatory. Its purpose is to facilitate the collection of quality screening-level, exposure-related information on chemical substances and to make that information available for use by EPA. The new rule seeks to make, to the extent possible (due to data confidentiality claims), this same information available to the public.
The new CDR rule is aimed principally at chemical manufacturers and importers subject to the requirements of the TSCA, but will impact paint formulators’ relationships with raw material suppliers seeking information to support their own compliance programs.
The webinar is timely and the official reporting period begins Feb. 1, 2012 and runs through June 30, 2012.
Companies required to participate in reporting for the 2012 CDR rule will need to register and use the Agency-provided electronic reporting tool, eCDRweb, to electronically complete and submit their CDR Form U. If you have not already registered through EPA's Central Data Exchange (CDX), you are strongly encouraged to do so as soon as possible. If you have not registered, you must first register with CDX under the new "Submissions for Chemical Safety and Pesticide Programs (CSPP)" to access the eCDRweb tool.
In particular, ACA’s webinar will focus on critical CDR considerations for paint formulators, such as the new data submission requirements that seek information on recycling efforts and waste-management related activities; reporting otherwise exempt products that are subject to an EPA rule or consent order; statute of limitations; more detailed information for reportable substances at the new level of 100,000 pounds or more; and complexities involved in adding up quantities of like-ingredients in imported paint products.
The CDR program spotlights the particular importance of submitting accurate reports if you are a manufacturer that seeks to recover resources from process emissions and have established inventory and management practices under other regulatory/legislative programs at the federal and/or state level (i.e., the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Clean Water Act, and CWA, Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act).
At a recent collaborative seminar between EPA and the DC-based international law firm of Bergeson & Campbell, EPA officials reviewed a number of new scenarios that would require a whole range of reporting obligations for manufacturers that have covered “byproducts,” including some waste streams. The agency’s current guidance on the “byproducts” issue has led to even more confusion on the part of the regulated community, leading Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.), chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy to write to EPA and ask that the compliance date for the new CDR rule be postponed for four months, noting the particular confusion of the byproducts issue.
In response, EPA has said that it will post by Feb. 1 supplemental information to help clarify when companies must report their manufacture of byproduct chemicals before the data-submission period begins on Feb. 1. Production volume and other information must be filed by June 30 for byproducts covered by the Chemical Data Reporting rule.
ACA was active in commenting on the adverse impacts of the EPA proposed rule, and the final rule reflects a number of considerations recommended by industry regulatory specialists. These recommendations offer some assistance in facilitating the required reporting, including retention of some prior exemptions and some clarifying definitional changes, but overall the final rule is still burdensome, and will be required on a new four year schedule.
For more information, including program updates, announcements, and guidance materials for 2012 reporting, visit the EPA’s CDR website at http://www.epa.gov/cdr.