An alliance of environmental advocacy groups jointly filed a lawsuit challenging The U.S. EPA’s new Risk Evaluation and Prioritization Rules recently published under the Lautenberg Act. Both rules were required by Section 6 of the statute. The final rules were released by EPA to the public on June 22.
The Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments (ANHE), the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), and Safer Chemicals Healthy Families have joined in the suit, arguing the Prioritization Rules are arbitrary, capricious, and an abuse of discretion not in accordance with the law.
The organizations each filed separate lawsuits in four different appellate courts on August 11.
Safer Chemicals Health Families was joined by several advocacy groups including Environmental Working Group, Union of Concerned Scientists and AFL-CIO. ANHE The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) joined the Alliance of Nurse’s petition.
EDF commented that it believes the final risk evaluation rule improperly narrows conditions of use by not including all conditions of use in the risk evaluation. NRDC expressed a similar concern that the risk evaluation rule introduces loopholes that could lead to incomplete analysis, which could lead EPA to falsely conclude that a chemical doesn’t pose a health or environmental risk when it actually does. In response to the prioritization rule, EDF contends that the final rule devises an information-gathering process that intends to minimize and undermine EPA’s use of the new testing protocols available to the agency under section 4.