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National P2 News

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EPA Issues Final Rule to Protect the Public from Exposure to Formaldehyde (07/27/2016)
WASHINGTON--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today moves to reduce exposure to formaldehyde vapors from certain wood products produced domestically or imported into the United States. The agency worked with the California Air Resources Board to help ensure the final national rule is consistent with California requirements for composite wood products. "We are carrying out important measures laid out by Congress to protect the public from harmful exposure of this widely used chemical found in homes and workplaces", said Jim Jones, EPA's assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. "We have worked with the state of California as a partner to help ensure consistency in our requirements. The new rule will level the playing field for domestic manufacturers who have a high rate of compliance with the California standard and will ensure that imported products not subject to California's requirements will meet the new standard and thus, not contain dangerous formaldehyde vapors."

Wal-Mart Asks Its Suppliers to Stop Using Eight Chemicals (07/26/2016)
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is asking suppliers to remove formaldehyde, triclosan and six other substances from their products, part of an effort to eliminate controversial chemicals from household goods. The chemicals on the list include "certain properties that can affect human health or the environment," Wal-Mart said in a statement Wednesday. The world's largest retailer created the list with help from the Environmental Defense Fund, aiming to get suppliers to find alternatives, said Zach Freeze, Wal-Mart's director for strategic initiatives related to sustainability. The list was limited to eight high-priority chemicals so that Wal-Mart could make meaningful progress.

Updated law boosts EPA regulatory power over chemicals (07/05/2016)
Armed with new powers from Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency is readying for action on chemicals. EPA is training its regulatory sights on three long-used solvents that agency scientists determined may pose a serious risk to consumers' health.

U.S. EPA to Help Six Communities Develop Sustainable Design Strategies (06/27/2016)
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today it has selected six cities for technical assistance with sustainable design strategies under its Greening America's Communities (GAC) program. The 2016 cities chosen for assistance are: Columbia, SC; Brownsville, TX; Oklahoma City, OK; Muscatine, IA; Honolulu, HI; and Multnomah County, OR. "EPA is excited to roll up our sleeves and start working with the next round of cities through Greening America's Communities," said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. "This program is another example of EPA making a visible difference in communities--helping build healthy, vibrant neighborhoods and stronger local economies centered on environmental sustainability."

New Criteria for Endocrine Disruptors Announced (06/20/2016)
Today the European Commission presents criteria to identify endocrine disruptors in the field of plant protection products and biocides. The Commission proposes to the Council and the European Parliament to adopt a strong science-based approach to the identification of endocrine disruptors and to endorse the WHO definition. Endocrine disruptors are substances, both natural and chemical, that can alter the functions of the hormonal system and consequently cause adverse effects on people or animals. Today, the European Commission presents two draft legal acts with scientific criteria that will allow for a more accurate identification of chemical substances which are endocrine disruptors, in the plant protection products and biocides areas.

EPA and Gloucester Officials Celebrate Local Food Economy (06/16/2016)
GLOUCESTER -- EPA Regional Administrator Curt Spalding visited Gloucester on Wednesday June 15 to applaud the commencement of a workshop to help the City of Gloucester promote use of underutilized fish species as a way to enhance and make the local economy more robust, to advance public health and nutrition, as well as revitalize the downtown. The workshop is being conducted as part of the White House Rural Council's effort to promote "Local Foods, Local Places," a federal initiative that helps communities increase economic opportunities for local food producers and related businesses, creating vibrant places and promoting wellness by improving access to healthy local food. Gloucester is one of 27 communities in 22 states that has been selected to participate in this program, and is the only New England municipality selected under this program.

EPA Honors Winners of the 2016 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards (06/13/2016)
WASHINGTON --The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is recognizing landmark green chemistry technologies developed by industrial pioneers and leading scientists that turn climate risk and other environmental problems into business opportunities, spurring innovation and economic development. "From academia to business, we congratulate those who bring innovative solutions that will help solve some of the most critical environmental problems," said Jim Jones, EPA's assistant administrator for chemical safety and pollution prevention. "These innovations reduce the use of energy, hazardous chemicals and water, while cutting manufacturing costs and sparking investments. They even turn pollution into useful products. Ultimately, these manufacturing processes and products are safer for people's health and the environment. We will continue to work with the 2016 winners as their technologies are adopted in the marketplace."

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