On January 09, 2023 (88 FR 1222), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a Notice in the Federal Register (FR) announcing the availability of the final revision to the risk determination for the Trichloroethylene (TCE) risk evaluation issued under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). The revision to the TCE risk determination reflects the announced policy changes to ensure the public is protected from unreasonable risks from chemicals in a way that is supported by science and the law. EPA determined that TCE, as a whole chemical substance, presents an unreasonable risk of injury to health when evaluated under its conditions of use. In addition, this revised risk determination does not reflect an assumption that workers always appropriately wear personal protective equipment (PPE). EPA understands that there could be adequate occupational safety protections in place at certain workplace locations; however, not assuming use of PPE reflects EPA’s recognition that unreasonable risk may exist for subpopulations of workers that may be highly exposed because they are not covered by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards, or their employers are out of compliance with OSHA standards, or because many of OSHA’s chemicalspecific permissible exposure limits largely adopted in the 1970’s are described by OSHA as being “outdated and inadequate for ensuring protection of worker health,” or because EPA finds unreasonable risk for purposes of TSCA notwithstanding OSHA requirements. This revision supersedes the condition of use-specific no unreasonable risk determinations in the November 2020 TCE Risk Evaluation and withdraws the associated TSCA order included in the November 2020 TCE Risk Evaluation.
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