In a largely symbolic vote along party lines in July, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee by a 10-8 vote passed an amended version of Senator Frank Lautenberg’s (D-NJ) Safe Chemicals Act of 2011 (S. 847). Despite the committee’s passage of the bill, the legislation faces a headwind of opposition from Senate Republicans and the chemical industry, and is unlikely to be passed this year.
Republicans criticized the scheduled markup of the Safe Chemicals Act, particularly in light of Lautenberg’s earlier agreement to enter into bipartisan negotiations to create a “fresh legislation proposal” to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), Ranking Member, entered a statement criticizing the Safe Chemicals Act as currently drafted. The amended bill is available online at NASF.org. A webcast of the committee’s hearing and Inhofe’s statement are available online as well.