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EPA Takes Action on Five Priority Chemicals (October 2016)

In response to new requirements of the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act that amends the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is facilitating accelerated action on five chemicals that fall into the persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) class of chemicals. The new law appeals for action to be taken as soon as possible, rather than spending more time evaluating these chemicals.

PBT chemicals are toxic and can remain in the environment for significant periods of time, which causes them to build up in the tissues of organisms. As a result, EPA is taking accelerated action to reduce human and environmental exposure.

The five priority chemicals are:

1. Decabromodiphenyl ethers (DecaBDE) – flame retardant used in textiles and plastics

2. Hexachlorobutadiene (HCBD) – solvent used to synthesize rubber compounds

3. Pentachlorothio-phenol (PCTP) – agent used to increase rubber flexibility

4. Tris (4-isopropylphenyl) phosphate – flame retardant used in consumer and industrial products

5. 2,4,6-Tris(tert-butyl)phenol – used as an additive in in fuel, oil, gasoline, and lubricants

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