How to Comply with TSCA Section 8(a)(7) for PFAS: A Step-by-Step Guide

April 2024
Last modified:
May 2024
Dr Steven Brennan
Dr Steven Brennan

In this article

Foresight regulatory experts
Streamline PFAS compliance with our guide on identifying PFAS in products and engaging suppliers effectively. Use Foresight's tools for ease.

Navigating the complexities of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Section 8(a)(7) for Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) can be daunting for businesses and importers. Compliance is not just a regulatory requirement; it's a crucial step in safeguarding public health and the environment from these persistent chemicals. This article provides a comprehensive guide to help you understand and meet the obligations under this rule efficiently and effectively.

Understanding TSCA Section 8(a)(7)

The TSCA Section 8(a)(7) sets forth specific reporting and recordkeeping requirements for Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS). These chemicals are widely used across various industries and in consumer products due to their resistance to heat, water, and oil. Familiarizing yourself with the details of this regulation is the first step toward ensuring compliance.

Scope of the Rule

It's essential to assess whether your business operations fall within the scope of TSCA Section 8(a)(7). This regulation applies to U.S. manufacturers and importers of PFAS. Activities that come under this rule include:

  • Manufacturing and Importing: Companies engaged in the production or importation of PFAS chemicals or PFAS-containing products are required to meet specific reporting obligations.
  • Article Importers: Businesses importing articles, whether components or completed goods, that might contain PFAS are obligated to identify and report the presence of these substances.

Understanding and adhering to these requirements is crucial for compliance and ensuring your business operations align with this federal regulation.

Step-by-Step Compliance Guide for TSCA Section 8(a)(7)

1. Familiarise With the Rule

Learn the Requirements

Review the Rule: Start by comprehensively reviewing the TSCA Section 8(a)(7) documentation to understand which PFAS substances are covered.

Identify Reporting Thresholds: Ascertain the minimum amounts of PFAS that necessitate reporting to ensure compliance.

Keep Track of Deadlines: Clearly note all filing deadlines to maintain compliance without lapses.

Utilize Educational Resources

EPA Resources: Access detailed guidance documents, fact sheets, and frequently asked questions on the EPA's official website to deepen your understanding of PFAS regulations.

Industry Group Materials: Participate in seminars, workshops, and webinars offered by industry associations which are designed to assist businesses in navigating their regulatory responsibilities.

Expert Consultations: For tailored advice specific to your business’s needs, consider reaching out to professionals who specialize in environmental compliance.

2. Determine if Business Operations Are in Scope

Identify PFAS Articles

Inventory Review: Conduct a thorough examination of your inventory to identify articles that might contain PFAS. Focus on analysing product components and their specific uses, which could indicate the presence of PFAS.

Utilize Tools: Leverage Foresight’s PFAS Risk Scanner to efficiently scan your supply chain or article data for PFAS risks. This tool helps pinpoint potential PFAS components, streamlining the identification process.

Supplier Engagement

Communication Strategy: Initiate structured communication with your suppliers to confirm the presence of PFAS in the articles you buy. Transparency and clarity are key in these interactions.

Data Collection Protocol: Establish a clear protocol with your suppliers for collecting the necessary data on PFAS. This should include specific information requirements and timelines for responses to ensure compliance readiness.

3. Complete the Submission Forms

Reporting Forms: Prepare to complete the required forms accurately. This involves detailed information about the PFAS used, such as chemical identity, categories of use, and volume.

Digital Submissions: Ensure that forms are submitted through the EPA’s Central Data Exchange (CDX), which requires registration and an electronic signature.

4. Undertake Recordkeeping

Maintain Records: Keep detailed records of all the information gathered and submitted, including correspondence with suppliers and copies of submitted forms. These records must be retained for at least five years from the date of submission.

5. (Optional) Make CBI Claim Substantiation

Confidential Business Information (CBI): If you need to protect certain information as confidential, be prepared to substantiate these claims per the requirements of the EPA.

6. Maintain Compliance

Stay Updated: Regulatory requirements can evolve, so it’s crucial to stay informed about any changes to TSCA regulations or PFAS-related guidelines.

Training and Audits: Regularly train your staff on compliance procedures and conduct internal audits to ensure ongoing adherence to the rule.

Next Steps

Compliance with TSCA Section 8(a)(7) is critical for any business handling PFAS. By following these structured steps, you can ensure that your compliance processes are thorough and effective, thereby minimizing potential risks to your business and contributing positively to environmental and public health outcomes. Remember, while compliance might be complex, the resources provided by the EPA and other environmental bodies can help simplify the process.

Need Help With Compliance? Contact Foresight Today!

Navigating the complexities of TSCA Section 8(a)(7) can be challenging. If you're looking for support to ensure thorough understanding and compliance, Foresight is here to help. Our team of experts provides specialized support to streamline your compliance process. Contact us today to see how our services can keep you on track with your PFAS reporting and compliance requirements.

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