Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Reform Efforts

The Chemical Safety Improvement Act (CSIA), TSCA reform legislation, was introduced in May 2013 by Sens. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and David Vitter (R-LA). Given the significant bipartisan support for the CSIA, it is the first real likelihood of TSCA reform moving forward. In April 2014, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy released a discussion draft of TSCA reform legislation – the Chemicals in Commerce Act. The House draft contains legislative language that clarifies an exemption for byproducts sent for recycling, which IPC lobbied for.

A summary of the February 2014 CICA can be found here.

A summary of the changes based on the April 2014 CICA can be found here.

TSCA Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) Rule

On August 16, 2011 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued the final Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule (formerly the Inventory Update Reporting (IUR) rule). The CDR rule requires manufacturers (including importers) of certain chemical substances listed on the TSCA Inventory of Chemical Substances to report information about the manufacturing (including import), processing, and use of those chemical substances.

Only chemicals listed on the TSCA Inventory are subject to CDR reporting. According to EPA, if a chemical is not on the TSCA Inventory prior to the beginning of the reporting cycle then there are no reporting obligations for that chemical. The beginning of the 2012 reporting cycle was February 1, 2012.

The reporting period ends August 13, 2012.

Byproducts Reporting

The final CDR rule explicitly states that byproducts sent for recycling are new chemicals subject to TSCA CDR reporting because they are a feedstock to the recycler and therefore subject to TSCA reporting. This applies to several byproducts produced during the manufacture of printed boards, including copper hydroxide (WWT sludge), copper sulfate (spent baths), cupric chloride (spent etchant), and tetraamine copper dichloride (spent ammoniacal etchant).

IPC submitted extensive comments expressing our dissatisfaction with EPA's interpretation that byproducts sent for recycling are new chemicals and the overly burdensome reporting requirements proposed. At the request of IPC and other industry stakeholders, EPA participated in a workshop to clarify reporting obligations for manufacturers that send byproducts for recycling. A summary of the workshop and important information regarding byproduct reporting obligations can be found in an IPC Outlook article.

Reporting Requirements

The reporting deadline for the 2011 submission period is August 13, 2012. Information on 2011 manufacturing, processing and use information must be reported on chemicals on the TSCA Inventory that are manufactured or imported above 25,000 pounds.

Electronic reporting is required. In order to report under the TSCA CDR rule you must register to Central Data Exchange (CDX). Learn more about how to register. If you are already registered with CDX, begin the reporting process for the CDR rule.

Reporting Requirements for the 2012 Submission Period Include:

  • Reporting the manufacturing (or importing) volume of a chemical at a single site
  • Reporting manufacturing data and processing and use data
  • Identifying consumer and commercial categories associated with the reportable chemical

Reporting Requirements Beginning with the 2016 Submission Period:
In addition to the reporting requirements listed above, beginning in 2016, a manufacturer will be required to report the manufacturing (or import) volume of a chemical on the TSCA Inventory for each calendar year since the last principal reporting year. In this case, manufacturers will need to report the chemical's volume for 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. If, during any calendar year, the volume of chemical manufactured (or imported) is 25,000 pounds or more, manufacturers (and importers) are required to report manufacturing and processing and use information on the chemical.