Cadmium Rule on Hold After Industry Pressure

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By Erin Weaver

A new rule intended to increase companies’ reporting of the use of cadmium compounds has been retracted due to industry pressure. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published the rule last November under the Toxic Substances Control Act, adding cadmium to the list of substances for which all companies that produced, imported, or processed the material—or proposed doing so—in the last ten years must submit any unpublished health and safety studies to EPA. The documents were announced to be due by March 4, 2013. An industry group, the International Cadmium Association, submitted a letter to EPA objecting that companies had not had the opportunity to give feedback on the rule and asking EPA to withdraw the rule or extend the deadline for companies to seek exclusions for some cadmium compounds, as they are found in such a large number of products. EPA has since withdrawn the rule for further consideration, citing “significant confusion and uncertainty within certain industrial sectors.” Cadmium is most often used in making rechargeable batteries.

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January 28, 2013