Category: Chemicals

Today’s workplace uses thousands of chemicals, many of which are hazardous. The resources in this section will help guide you in the safe and legal identification, storage, transport, and use of these chemicals, and in making sure that your employees right to know how to be safe around such substances is provided, as required by law.

Ethylene Oxide Under Fire and Increased Scrutiny

A recent jury ruling in Cook County, Illinois, granting a $360 million win to plaintiff Sue Kamuda in her damages suit against medical sterilizer Sterigenics’ Willowbrook plant does not bode well for facilities using ethylene oxide (EtO). In the suit, Kamuda claimed she contracted cancer from breathing emissions from the facility over three decades. According […]

Chemical Safety Board Releases Final Reports and Updates

The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) recently released final reports on two concluded investigations and updates on four ongoing investigations. The CSB’s October 11 final report on a June 2019 fire and explosion at the Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) Refinery in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, identified several safety issues. During the incident, a corroded […]

The Problem With Pesticides

The recent report “How the EPA’s lax regulation of dangerous pesticides is hurting public health and the US economy” by the Brookings Institution highlights ways the EPA is lagging behind the rest of the world in regulating pesticides to protect human and wildlife health. The report lists approximately 85 agricultural pesticides that are still approved […]

Ask the Expert: Sending Reportable Chemicals

In our latest installment of Ask the Expert, brought to you by the team of industry experts at EHS Hero®, we look at a recent question from a subscriber asking about the regulations that require notifying customers of reportable chemicals. See what the experts had to say. Q: What regulation requires you to notify your customer […]

Judge Nixes Louisiana Formosa Plant’s Air Permits

Baton Rouge District Judge Trudy White recently vacated air permits for the Formosa Petrochemical Corp.’s proposed plastic and petrochemical plant in Louisiana’s infamous industrialized “Cancer Alley,” so named because of the high rates of cancer suffered by the predominantly African-American residents. Environmental and citizen advocacy groups challenged the permit approval decision for Formosa’s controversial Sunshine […]

Petition to Eliminate SSM ‘Loopholes’

On September 13, 2022, a group of environmental and community advocacy organizations petitioned the EPA to close “loopholes” in the regulations implementing the Clean Air Act (CAA) that “allow facilities like oil refineries, chemical plants, and incinerators to disregard emission standards, stop reporting their pollution, and avoid fines or other consequences for excess pollution they […]

Infographic: Meatpacking Hazards

Employees in the meatpacking industry are exposed to a number of different health and safety hazards on a regular basis. According to OSHA, these hazards include exposure to high noise levels, dangerous equipment, slippery floors, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), and hazardous chemicals. Workers also face biological hazards from handling live animals or exposures to blood or feces […]

EPA Proposes PFOA And PFOS Designation as Hazardous Substances

On August 26, 2022, the EPA proposed to designate perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), including their salts and structural isomers, as hazardous substances under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), also known as “Superfund.” These substances are two of the most widely used per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), which are […]

Changes to the EPA’s Safer Chemicals Ingredients List

In recent weeks, the EPA has made two announcements about new chemicals added to its Safer Chemicals Ingredients List (SCIL). The SCIL is a “living list of chemicals by functional-use class that EPA’s Safer Choice program has evaluated and determined meet the Safer Choice Standard.” Products containing chemicals on the SCIL are the gold standard […]

New SNUR Requirements Will Better Protect Worker Health

In July 2022, the EPA finalized amendments to its requirements for Significant New Use Rules (SNURs) to better protect the health of workers. One of the uses of SNURs is to require notice to the EPA before chemical substances and mixtures are used in new ways that might create health concerns. These amendments strengthen requirements […]