Wednesday, June 22, 2011

EPA to Initiate Chemical Safety for Sustainability Plan

The USEPA is set to launch a Chemical Safety for Sustainability initiative.  The plan is to use innovative approaches to assess chemical hazard and exposure so this can be accurately communicated to the public.  According to their web site:

EPA scientists and their partners are embracing the principles of green chemistry to produce safer chemicals. They are also integrating a diversity of scientific disciplines to develop new prediction techniques, pioneering the use of innovative technologies for chemical toxicity testing, and designing tools to advance the management of chemical risks. Chemical safety for sustainability includes research in computational toxicology, nanotechnology, endocrine disrupting chemicals, human health, and pesticides.

As part of this ongoing process EPA recently made available two new chemical databases - ToxCastDB and ExpoCastDB.  These supplement the ToxCast robotic screening testing program started earlier by EPA.  The most recent announcement of the Chemical Safety for Sustainability initiative was made during the first meeting of the National Research Council's Committee on Science for EPA's Future, part of the National Academies of Sciences.

The three main areas of focus for the program are:
  • Providing scientific knowledge, tools and models for integrated evaluation strategies
  • Improving assessment and informing management for chemical safety
  • Targeting high priority research needs for immediate and focused attention

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