Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  EPA published a document to serve as the basis for “A Working Approach for Identifying Potential Candidate Chemicals for Prioritization.”  This presents EPA’s initial step in evaluating the safety of existing chemicals under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). The document also includes a longer-term risk-based approach for considering the larger TSCA chemical list.  This new work stems from the 2016 Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which amended the original, 40-year old TSCA, passed in 1976. EPA will take comments on its proposed approach until November 15.  Watch for a public meeting in early 2019.
*  NHTSA – the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration –seeks comments on “matters related to the near-term and long-term challenges of Automated Driving Systems (ADS) testing, development and eventual deployment.”  NHTSA wants comments on appropriate factors and structure to consider in designing a program to facilitate, monitor and learn from ADS research.  NHTSA lists four focus areas: (1) appropriate test factors. (2)  Using existing statutes and regulations.  (3) Additional elements needed to facilitate on-road research and testing for vehicles that may lack controls for human drivers and thus may not comply with all existing safety standards. (4) Exemptions enabling company participation and ways to assess the merits of exemptions and the types of terms and conditions that might be necessary.  Comments are due November 26.
*  From the International Energy Association last week: “Our position is that expensive energy is back, with oil, gas and coal trading at multi-year highs, and it poses a threat to economic growth.”  You gotta think about IEA’s overall number: 100 million barrels per day! Oil demand and supply are now at 100 mb/d!  One hundred million barrels today and 
Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow
seeps into the bottomless gas tanks day to day,
To the last fill-‘er-up of recorded time;
And CO2 from all our yesterdays’ commuting times
The way to a dusty planet. Out, out, brief candle!
Walking is a shadow cast on poor players and mass transit,
It hurts the feet and is almost as slow as the stage(coach),
Then you just have to walk some more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.
(Deepest apologies to the Bard and his friend, the future King, Macbeth *:)) laughing!)

Tom Ewing
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513-379-5526 voice/text