TSCA risk assessment: EPA drafts protocol on review of studies, seeks comment
Washington — The Environmental Protection Agency is requesting public comment on a draft Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 systematic review protocol intended to “strengthen EPA’s approach to reviewing and selecting the scientific studies that are used to inform TSCA chemical risk evaluations.”
Announced in the Dec. 20 Federal Register, the document integrates feedback from a February report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. The report recommends EPA “reconsider its overall strategy” behind the review process to complete chemical risk evaluations under the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act.
In a press release, EPA claims the protocol “streamlines the data evaluation of human health hazards” by allowing the use of recent and future systematic reviews from EPA’s Integrated Risk Information System program, in accordance with a recommendation from the NASEM report.
The protocol also offers details about the systematic reviews of 25 chemicals, including 20 additional chemicals that EPA, in late 2019, designated as high-priority substances for risk evaluation under the Lautenberg Act, as well as a supplemental evaluation of asbestos.
Comments on the protocol are due Feb. 18. A TSCA Scientific Advisory Committee on Chemicals peer review of the document is set for April 19-21. EPA says it will announce further specifics on the SACC website by early March.