The Phylmar Group Inc. Newsletter
April 2017, Issue #87
NIOSH Needs Your Help,

The U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is seeking the public's input on a draft guidance for the evaluation of chemical hazards and occupational exposure banding.  The document is intended to be a tool to protect workers from chemicals without occupational exposure limits.  NIOSH has also published a new webpage with resources on exposure banding in conjunction with the release of the draft.

Next, we turn to several regulatory actions by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  The Agency has begun reviewing final rules and has withdrawn proposed rules in response to recent Executive Orders issued by President Trump.  The Clean Power Plan, Emissions Standards, and Clean Water Rules are all being reviewed for the need to rescind or reform.  EPA has also withdrawn proposed rules providing guidance and incentives for clean power production. 

We hope that this information is valuable to you and please feel free to reach out if you have any questions. 

Mark Katchen, CIH
Managing Principal 
The Phylmar Group, Inc.

NIOSH Seeks Comment on Draft Document on Occupational Exposure Banding Process: Guidance for the Evaluation of Chemical Hazards
Summary of NIOSH eNews , Volume 14, Number 12, April 2017

On March 15, 2017, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) published notice of a draft for public comment entitled The NIOSH Occupational Exposure Banding Process: Guidance for the Evaluation of Chemical Hazards.  This is a new tool to protect workers from workplace chemicals without occupational exposure limits (OELs).  

Occupational exposure banding , also known as hazard banding, is a process intended to quickly and accurately assign chemicals into specific categories (bands), which correspond to a range of exposure concentrations designed to protect worker health.  These bands are assigned based on a chemical's toxicological potency and the adverse health effects associated with exposure to the chemical.  Currently, the rate at which new chemicals are being introduced into commerce significantly outpaces OEL development, creating a need for risk guidance on thousands of chemicals that lack evidence-based exposure limits. 

Comments on the draft guidance are due June 13, and a public meeting will be held on May 23.  The draft document, information about the public meeting, and submission of public comments, are available in this docket .  NIOSH has also posted a new topic webpage on occupational exposure banding in conjunction with the public release of the draft.  The webpage provides useful resources and information about the proposed occupational exposure banding process.

EPA Reviewing Clean Power Plan, Emissions Standards, and Waters of the U.S. Rules; Withdraws Proposed Clean Power Guidance and Incentives to States
There have been several regulatory developments with the EPA in recent weeks. First, the EPA is reviewing the Clean Power Plan and related rules following the Energy Independence Executive Order signed by President Trump on March 28.  The Order directs agencies responsible for regulating domestic energy production to submit plans to revise or rescind, regulatory barriers that impede progress towards energy independence, and directs the Administrator of the EPA to review, and if necessary, revise or rescind, regulations that may place unnecessary, costly burdens on coal-fired electric utilities and oil and gas producers.  On April 3,  EPA took action by withdrawing proposed rules that would have provided States with guidance and incentives for implementing the Clean Power Plan.

On March 15, EPA and the Department of Transportation (DOT) announced the review of a rule on fuel economy and emissions standards for cars and light duty trucks, which would require 54.5 mpg for cars and light-duty trucks by model year 2025.  EPA must determine no later than April 1, 2018, whether the standards established are appropriate and may submit a new proposal for public comment.

Finally, on March 6, the EPA published a notice of intent to review, rescind, or revise the Clean Water Rule: Definition of Waters of the U.S.  This follows a February 28 Executive Order directing the Agency to do so.  According to the EPA's clean water rule webpage , the rule ensures that waters protected under the Clean Water Act are more precisely defined, more predictably determined, and easier for businesses and industry to understand.  In addition, the rule does not protect any new types of waters.

Upcoming Environmental, Health, Safety, and Sustainability Events
Sustainatopia , San Francisco, CA, May 7-10, 2017

Sustainable Brands Redefining the Good Life , Detroit, MI, May 22-25, 2017

The Conscious Company Global Leaders Forum , San Francisco, CA, June 7-9, 2017

Work, Stress and Health 2017 , Minneapolis, MN, June 7-10, 2017

Did You Know?
Did you know as a PRR, AFIRM or BioPharma EHS Forum member that your benefits included access to Phylmar's global consulting network that provides concierge level service? The Phylmar Academy provides continuing EHS education and employee training. You can save up to 20% on these services through your membership. Contact Mark Katchen ( ) for more information.
About The Phylmar Group, Inc.
The Phylmar GroupĀ® is an organization that partners with best-in-class companies on their most challenging environmental, health and safety, and social responsibility issues by anticipating clients' needs from strategy to implementation. Our expert client advisors deliver innovative, responsible, efficient solutions addressing client needs and creating added value. For more information, visit or call +1 310.474.3937.

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