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Toxics

Whitmer Escalates Fight With DOD Over Michigan PFAS Cleanup Limits

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) is escalating a fight with the Defense Department (DOD) over cleanup of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), invoking a provision in the 2020 defense authorization law to amend an existing Michigan-DOD agreement in a bid to force the military to meet the state’s strict PFAS water standards.

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Democrats Float Bill To Allow Private Suits Against PFAS Manufacturers

Newly announced legislation from House and Senate Democrats would allow individuals who have been exposed to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to sue companies linked to those exposures, expanding liability for firms that make or use the chemicals while also setting up a new medical monitoring program for victims.

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CSB Announces Plan To Rework Board Operations, Boost Investigators

The Chemical Safety Board (CSB), which investigates releases of hazardous or toxic chemicals and other industrial incidents, will soon be drawing up a new board order as recommended by EPA’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG), which oversees CSB, while increasing the ranks of its investigators.

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EPA Readying SACC Appointments Based On 2020 Nomination Cycle

EPA is preparing to appoint new members to its Science Advisory Committee on Chemicals (SACC) “in the near future” based on nominations it received in 2020, continuing the Biden administration’s effort to quickly rebalance agency advisory panels after EPA dismissed all members from two other key committees.

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States’ PFAS Monitoring, Discharge Rules Spur Regulated Entities’ Fears

States are beginning to require industrial facilities to monitor for and in some cases limit the discharge of some per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in stormwater and wastewater, prompting concern from regulated entities that states are moving ahead with differing policies even as EPA lacks any analytical methods for PFAS in wastewater.

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Environmentalists Maintain Pressure On EPA For Stricter Air Toxics Rules

Environmental groups are maintaining their pressure on EPA to tighten air toxics rules for several industries, saying in recent written comments that Trump-era proposed revisions to several sector-specific emissions rules are too weak and urging the Biden administration to strengthen the rules in order to achieve its environmental justice (EJ) goals.

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To Bolster Scientific Integrity, EPA Will ‘Reconstitute’ Key Advisory Panels

EPA has dissolved the current memberships of its Science Advisory Board (SAB) and Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) and will seek new nominees to both committees as well as their subpanels, in what Administrator Michael Regan said is a necessary step to strengthen the agency’s scientific integrity protections.

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EPA Waste Office Eyeing Revisions To Superfund Lead Policies, Approach

EPA is weighing possible revisions to its policies and approaches for tackling lead at Superfund sites including improving cross-agency coordination on addressing multiple sources of lead and reviewing the existing lead level used in cleanups at such sites, says Carlton Waterhouse, the top Biden political appointee in the agency’s waste office.

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AMWA outlines EPA water policy priority concerns for Regan

The Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies (AMWA) is highlighting the challenges of climate change, cybersecurity and preventing chemicals from entering the water supply.

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EPA Strengthens New Chemical Risk Reviews, Targets Worker Protections

EPA’s acting chemicals chief is detailing a series of steps to toughen reviews of new chemicals, including increasing the use of enforcement orders after approving pre-manufacture notices (PMNs), expanding the scope of reviews and dropping what critics said were overly optimistic assumptions on workers’ use of protective gear.

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