First 10 Chemicals on EPA Toxic Test List

November 29, 2016

The EPA announced today the first 10 chemicals it will evaluate for potential risks to human health and the environment under Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) reform.

“Under the new law, we now have the power to require safety reviews of all chemicals in the marketplace,” said Jim Jones, assistant administrator of the of Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. “We can ensure the public that we will deliver on the promise to better protect public health and the environment.”

10 chemicals EPA has selected for risk evaluation


Exposure Information from

2014 Work Plan

Hazard Information from 2014 Work Plan
1,4-Dioxane Used in consumer products such as ink and aluminum containers. Present in groundwater, ambient air and indoor environments. Can be found in solid waste landfills.  Possible human carcinogen
1-Bromopropane Used as a solvent for adhesives in aerosol glues and a solvent in asphalt production.  Present in drinking water, indoor environments, surface water, ambient air, groundwater, soil. Estimated to have high releases to the environment.  Possible human carcinogen
Asbestos Fibrous mineral used in coatings and compounds, plastics, roofing products, pipe insulation, insulating board, cement applications, vinyl flooring, stucco, joint filler, acoustic materials. Known human carcinogen; Acute and chronic toxicity from inhalation exposures
Carbon Tetrachloride  Used as Halon-104 in firefighting systems, refrigerants, and cleaning solvents. Also found in lava lamps. Used in commercial/industrial products. Present in biomonitoring, drinking water, indoor environments, surface water, ambient air, groundwater, soil. Probable human carcinogen
Cyclic Aliphatic Bromide Cluster (HBCD) Flame retardant in extruded polystyrene foam, textiles, and electrical and electronic appliances. Acute aquatic toxicity
Methylene Chloride (MC) Can be used to test for clay minerals in aggregate. Also used in consumer products and medical applications. Present in drinking water, indoor environments, ambient air, groundwater, and soil.  Probable human carcinogen
N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP Used in the petrochemical and plastics industries as a solvent, paint stripper, lithium ion battery fabrication. Present in drinking water and indoor environments. High reported releases into the environment.  Reproductive toxicity
Pigment Violet 29 Anthra Used in metallic varnishes and dyes. Estimated to have moderate releases to the environment. Aquatic toxicity
Trichloroethylene (TCE) Solvent used as a degreaser for metal parts, and to flush engine fuels systems. Present in drinking water, indoor environments, surface water, ambient air, groundwater, and soil.  Probable human carcinogen
Tetrachloroethylene Used in automotive and metalworking industries and dry cleaning. Present in biomonitoring, drinking water, indoor environments, ambient air, groundwater, soil. High reported releases to the environment.  Probable human carcinogen

TSCA requires that EPA choose the first 10 chemicals from the list of 90 chemicals on the 2014 Update to the TSCA Work Plan. TSCA Work Plan chemicals were selected based on their hazard and the public’s potential exposure, as well as other considerations such as persistence and bioaccumulation.  In selecting the first 10 chemicals, EPA also took into account recommendations from the public, industry, environmental and public health groups, and members of Congress and tried to give weight to chemicals where work on assessing risks were underway.

When the list is published in the Federal Register it will trigger a statutory deadline to complete risk evaluations for these chemicals within three years.  This evaluation will determine whether the chemicals present an unreasonable risk to humans and the environment. If it is determined that a chemical presents an unreasonable risk, EPA must mitigate that risk within two years.

Under the newly amended law, EPA must release a scoping document within six months for each chemical. This will include the hazard(s), exposure(s), conditions of use, and the potentially exposed or susceptible subpopulation(s) the agency plans to consider for the evaluation.

Additional chemicals will be designated for evaluation, and all of the remaining Work Plan chemicals will be reviewed for their potential hazard and exposure. For each risk evaluation that EPA completes, TSCA requires that EPA begin another. By the end of 2019, EPA must have at least 20 chemical risk valuations ongoing at any given time.

For more on the chemicals listed and additional information: