While the Environmental Protection Agency said it does not have a position on the bill Sens. Tom UdallTom UdallDems blast Trump's policies at Climate March IT modernization bill reintroduced in Congress Overnight Energy: Trump orders review of national monuments, claiming ‘egregious abuse’ MORE (D-N.M.) and David VitterDavid VitterFormer senator who crafted chemicals law to lobby for chemicals industry Former GOP rep joins K Street lobbying firm Capitol Counsel Lobbying World MORE (R-La.) introduced to reform the nation’s chemical laws, an agency official told lawmakers at a hearing Wednesday that the bill is consistent with the six principals the Obama administration set in 2009 to reform the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act.
Those principals include reviewing chemicals against a safety standard that’s based on sound science; forcing manufacturers to provide the EPA with the necessary information to determine if a new chemical is safe; taking into account sensitive subpopulations such as children, pregnant women and the elderly; assessing priority chemicals in a timely manner; assuring transparency; and giving EPA a sustained source of funding.
“Zero,” he said.
“How many chemicals has EPA regulated since 1990?” Inhofe asked.
“Zero,” Jones said again.
During the hearing, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) said he’s concerned that the Udall-Vitter bill takes away states’ rights to enact their own chemical laws and wants to see language added to the bill that minimizes the use of animals to test chemicals.
Jones said the EPA is invested in pursuing alternatives to animals testing and will look at how the preemption of states weighs into the overall bill.
But during questioning from Sen. Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyDems blast Trump's policies at Climate March Sanders calls for renewed focus on fighting climate change Overnight Energy: Trump set to sign offshore drilling order MORE (D-Mass.), who introduced competing chemical reform legislation with Sen. Barbara BoxerBarbara BoxerAnother day, another dollar for retirement advice rip-offs Carly Fiorina 'certainly looking at' Virginia Senate run Top Obama adviser signs with Hollywood talent agency: report MORE (D-Calif.), Jones agreed that under the Udall-Vitter bill it could take the EPA more than 100 years to finish regulating thousands of chemicals in commerce if the agency stuck to the minimum pace requirements.
He also said Markey was correct when he said the Udall-Vitter bill would require the EPA to do separate analyses when there are multiple products that contain the same chemical.