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The United States will re regulate 329 PFAS substances



The US Environmental Protection Agency has announced significant new use control measures for 329 inactive PFAS substances listed under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).

On January 8, 2024, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced significant new use control (SNUNs) for inactive PFAS substances listed under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). This regulation requires enterprises to undergo a comprehensive review and risk assessment by the Environmental Protection Agency before producing or processing 329 perfluorinated and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in HQ-OPPT-2022-0867.



01. Inactive substances

The US TSCA directory categorizes chemical substances into two categories based on their market trade activity: active and inactive.

Inactive substances refer to chemical substances that have not been produced, imported, or processed commercially within the United States since June 21, 2006. If these substances originally classified as "inactive" need to be produced, imported, or processed in the United States, they can be changed from "inactive" to "active" by completing the directory reset process. In this case, there is no need for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to conduct a comprehensive review and risk confirmation.

With the introduction of the latest control policies, the process for resuming production of inactive PFAS substances within the United States will undergo changes.



02. Background of measures introduced

The EPA considers that if inactive PFAS substances are allowed to resume production and other activities without a complete assessment and risk resolution, it will inevitably cause harm to human health and the environment.

Therefore, the EPA has decided that such substances must undergo a Significant New Use Declaration (SNUN) before resuming production and other activities. The declarant needs to submit information on their use, exposure, and release within the United States to the EPA for evaluation, and determine whether they will pose uncontrollable risks to human health and the environment before use.



03. Faced with controlled substances

This control policy involves 329 inactive PFAS substances. If a company wants to use any of these 329 chemicals, they must first notify the EPA. Then, the agency will be required to conduct a strong review of health and safety information in accordance with the 2016 law to determine whether the new use may pose unreasonable risks to human health or the environment, and take any necessary restrictive measures before resuming use.


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