The United States Environmental Protection Agency ("U.S. EPA") is expected to issue a direct final rule imposing significant new use rules ("SNURs") on 107 chemicals pursuant to Section 5(e) of the Toxic Substances Control Act ("TSCA"). The direct final rule is scheduled to take effect November 20, 2012. Although U.S. EPA has already allowed these 107 chemicals to go into production, the chemicals are subject to protective measures either through a TSCA 5(e) consent orders or as part of the pre-manufacturing notices filed by the manufacturers. Any manufacture or use of one of these 107 chemicals that does not adopt these pre-existing protective measures would be considered a "new use" which would require that advance manufacture or use notification be provided to U.S. EPA. To see a copy of the Federal Register notice, please click here.

This most recent U.S. EPA action is consistent with U.S. EPA's ongoing efforts to more aggressively exercise its TSCA authority. Notwithstanding that TSCA reform seems to be stalled in Congress, in 2012, U.S. EPA has already issued SNURs for over 250 chemicals (including the 107 chemicals that are the subject of this direct final rule) and is aggressively moving forward with its TSCA Work Plan chemical assessments.