Myth vs. Fact: Opening Statements
July 31, 2013

Chairman Barbara Boxer, Opening Statement

Myth: California regulations are under fire from CSIA. (paraphrased)

Fact: Concerns raised by the State of California are overstated because the CSIA will not have the broad preemption effect that the State has predicted. The CSIA's preemption provisions are narrow in scope and do not preempt or eliminate any existing state laws. Limited preemption may apply to California on a chemical by chemical basis as EPA makes national decisions under the CSIA. To the extent that they affect California requirements, the CSIA provides the State with the ability to seek a waiver from EPA. A strong, unified national chemical regulatory program is in the interest of all states, including California.

Senator Ben Cardin, Opening Statement

Myth: I don't want to see legislation passed that will keep us from protecting our state. (paraphrased)

Fact: The CSIA is comprehensive, bipartisan reform that improves chemical safety nationwide; enhances cooperation between state governments and federal regulators; and provides clarity about the limited cases in which EPA decisions will take precedence over state regulations in order to promote a coherent national approach to chemical regulation and facilitate national commerce. While not widely known, current TSCA provides for preemption of state laws and regulations, but its application historically has had minimal effect. The CSIA will never preempt the traditional state roles of regulating water quality, air quality, waste treatment, or disposal and does not preempt wholesale state regulatory programs. Only in some instances could chemical-specific regulations be preempted in a narrowly tailored way based on EPA safety determinations. The CSIA enables states to work with EPA to address unique or pressing state concerns, including providing states with the ability to apply for a waiver from preemption.

Myth: CSIA's burden of proof provision is outdated. (paraphrased)

Fact: The CSIA is based on the principle that ensuring the safety of chemicals is a shared responsibility of manufacturers, the government, those who use chemicals as ingredients in other products, and those who sell chemical products. Under the CSIA, industry will bear the responsibility for providing EPA with the information and data it needs to conduct safety assessments and complete a safety determination. The CSIA will make it easier for EPA to request additional testing and data as part of the safety assessment and determination processes.
EPA will maintain the responsibility for applying the safety standard and making safety determinations about chemicals, in a consistent and transparent process, rather than giving manufacturers the ability to determine what is safe. This is what the public expects and wants.

Myth: CSIA's safety standard is not strong enough. (paraphrased)

Fact: The CSIA improves and strengthens the current safety standard and ensures chemical safety is a shared responsibility between industry and regulators. The CSIA requires that EPA base safety determinations only on health and environmental considerations, an improvement over today's TSCA.

 

-30-




Majority Office
410 Dirksen Senate Office Bldg.Washington, DC 20510-6175
phone: 202-224-6176
Minority Office
456 Dirksen Senate Office Bldg.Washington, DC 20510-6175
phone: 202-224-8832