Unlike pharmaceuticals or pesticides, industrial chemicals do not have to be tested before they are put on the market. Under the law regulating chemicals, producers are only rarely required to provide the federal government with the information necessary to assess safety.
“Rather than adding more regulations, Calvin Dooley, president of the American Chemistry Council, said in testimony that the “E.P.A. should take advantage of the massive amounts of data and information that the agency already has access to.” His organization has also argued that the bill risks raising costs, squelching innovation and putting American companies at a competitive disadvantage.
Senator David Vitter, Republican of Louisiana, is expected to introduce a competing bill that is likely to win the support of the chemical industry. While details about the bill are sparse, it aims to be less of a burden on industry. It would probably not require prior testing on many chemicals, and it would demand less data of companies than would Mr. Lautenberg’s bill.”