On July 25, 2012, the US Senate Environment and Public Works Committe passed an amended version of the Safe Chemicals Act of 2011 (S. 847), sponsored by Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D -N.J.). The 174-page bill is the latest attempt to overhaul the Toxics Substances Control Act of 1976, which has been heavily criticized as not providing sufficient authority for US EPA to address chemical risks. Key aspects of this latest proposed amendment include: 1) "batching" existing chemicals for risk screening to allow chemicals of "very low concern" to fall out of the system and those of "very high concern" to move forward toward expedited risk management review; 2) more reliance on existing information with the need for additional testing only "to the extent necessary to determine safety"; 3) "better balancing" of confidential business information (CBI) and trade secret protections; and 4) requiring quicker evaluation of information on proposed new chemicals. A 2-page Democratic Staff Summary of the bill is available here. As the legislation is still highly controversial and generating strong opposition from various groups, it is not yet clear how far the amended bill will progress beyond the Committee. "