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Toxics

Lack Of Study Funds May Clear The Way For Widely Used Pesticide

Industry research used to justify an updated EPA risk assessment for the widely used pesticide dimethoate has drawn skepticism at a meeting of the agency's Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP), but neither industry nor EPA is willing to fund further studies, prompting observers at the meeting to predict that the proposed risk assessment will escape major revisions.

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EPA Eyes First Rules For High-Volume Chemicals Based On New Data

EPA has laid out a major expansion of its effort to compile toxicity data on high-volume chemicals -- announcing plans for more test rules and opening the door to including more chemicals in the program -- while signaling a shift toward developing first-time regulations based on information gathered by the program, according to sources involved in the effort.

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Pentagon Readies Studies On Targeting Sources Of Perchlorate Pollution

The Defense Department is preparing to start funding a series of studies aimed at identifying the growing range of non-military sources of perchlorate, which could help limit the military's cleanup liability of the ubiquitous contaminant.

Some researchers are also working to distinguish between manmade and naturally occurring forms of the widespread groundwater contaminant, and to understand how the chemical forms under natural conditions.

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EPA TO SIGNAL SCOPE OF FUTURE CONTROLS ON FLAME RETARDANTS

EPA is poised to issue a regulation that should provide long-awaited clues about how extensively the agency plans to regulate a class of commonly used flame retardants that have raised serious health concerns and prompted bans in several states, say environmentalists and sources with state lawmakers.

The agency is expected any day to issue a significant new use rule (SNUR) under the Toxic Substances Control Act for penta-brominated diphenyl ethers, a flame retardant substance used mainly in furniture foam, according to agency representatives.

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WHITE HOUSE PLANS NEW REPORT SHOWING PROGRESS ON DIOXIN

A White House science official in a surprise move announced plans to release a report on dioxin in an apparent attempt to show administrative progress on monitoring and controlling for the highly controversial pollutant. But the move has already drawn protests from environmentalists who say development of the report will likely further delay release of EPA's dioxin risk review, which has been 13 years in the making.

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EPA DELAYS DEREGULATING POPULAR CHEMICAL BASED ON CANCER RISK DATA

EPA air officials have postponed the planned deregulation of a widely used solvent because of recent data on what they say is a closely related chemical that raises cancer risk concerns. But a chemical industry source says the substances are different enough to merit separate risk evaluations.

Sources say the information prompted EPA air officials to hold off on including methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) in a group of seven other air toxins that the agency delisted from regulatory requirements Nov. 18, after other EPA program offices raised concerns.

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DEFENSE DEPT. READIES STUDIES SHOWING RANGE OF PERCHLORATE SOURCES

The Defense Department is preparing to start funding a series of studies aimed at identifying the growing range of non-military sources of perchlorate, which could help limit the military's cleanup liability of the ubiquitous contaminant.

Some researchers are also working to distinguish between manmade and naturally occurring forms of the widespread groundwater contaminant, and to understand how the chemical forms under natural conditions.

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OMB EYES MAKING COST TO INDUSTRY NEW MEASURE OF EPA PERFORMANCE

The White House Office of Management & Budget (OMB) may require EPA and other federal agencies to measure the effectiveness of their programs by considering the cost to industry of implementing regulations, an EPA source says.

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NEW OMB PEER REVIEW REFORMS MAY AID INDUSTRY DATA CHALLENGES

The White House Office of Management & Budget (OMB) will call next year for a major overhaul of EPA and other agencies' peer review efforts that industry sources say will help them challenge agency science documents that underpin regulations.

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PROP. 65 'METHODS OF DETECTION' AMENDMENTS AIM TO END COURT CONFUSION

Industry outcry has prompted the health hazard assessment office to back down on a proposal to delete Proposition 65 "methods of detection" provisions. Instead, the office will modify the oft-contested Prop. 65 Section 12901, according to a letter it sent to stakeholders. The modifications are intended to reduce legal confusion that has plagued the section.

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