TSCA stands for ‘Toxic Substances Control Act.’ This is a law passed by the US Congress in 1976 and is a part of the Environmental Protection Act (EPA). The law regulates the introduction of any new or existing chemicals into a given environment. When the law was originally put into place all chemicals that were currently being used and considered safe for use were grandfathered in. Since then any new chemical that were developed had to be assessed and regulated before they could be put out onto the market.
Goals of the TSCA
The TSCA was written and passed to accomplish three main goals, which are:
- To evaluate and develop regulations for all commercial chemicals prior to them being allowed to enter the market.
- To develop effective regulations for chemicals that already existed in 1976 that represent an unreasonable risk to health or the environment.
- Regulate the distribution and use of chemicals.
All companies that use chemicals need to be aware of the regulations under the TSCA, and make sure they comply with them. When a company uses well-established chemicals it is easy to make sure that they remain in compliance. The regulations will be fairly standard to help ensure the chemicals are used in a safe way. When a company wants to use a more recently developed chemical, this can be more of a challenge as they will have to look into what the EPA has to say about it in order to comply.
The industry that really has to have the most in-depth knowledge of the TSCA is those that are involved with chemical development. When working on creating new chemicals for either industrial or commercial use it is critical to work closely with the EPA to ensure all safety measures are taken. Once a chemical is developed, they will need to help to identify all potential hazards, and how the chemical can be safely used.
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