The EPA Makes Chemical Information More Accessible to the Public
As part of administrator Lisa P. Jackson’s strong commitment to increase information on chemicals, for the first time, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is providing Web access, free of charge, to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Chemical Substance Inventory. This inventory contains a consolidated list of thousands of industrial chemicals maintained by the agency.
The EPA is also making this information available on Data.Gov, a Web site developed by the Obama Administration to provide public access to important government information. This action represents another step to increase the transparency of chemical information while continuing to push for legislative reform of the 30 year old TSCA law.
“Increasing the public’s access to information on chemicals is one of Administrator Jackson’s top priorities,” said Steve Owens, assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances. “The American people are entitled to easily accessible information on chemicals, and today’s action is part of a series of ongoing steps that the EPA is taking to empower the public with this important information.”
Until now, the consolidated public portion of the TSCA Inventory has only been available by purchase from the National Technical Reports Library or other databases. By adding the consolidated TSCA Inventory to the Agency’s website and to Data.Gov, the EPA is making this information readily available to the public at no cost.
Currently, there are more than 84,000 chemicals manufactured, used or imported in the U.S. listed on the TSCA Inventory. However, EPA is unable to publicly identify nearly 17,000 of these chemicals because the chemicals have been claimed as confidential business information under TSCA by the manufacturers. Under Administrator Jackson’s leadership, EPA has already begun a series of aggressive steps to provide greater transparency on chemical risk information, including an announcement in January that signaled the EPA’s intent to reduce a certain type of confidentiality claim, or Confidential Business Information (CBI) claim, on the identity of chemicals.