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EPA Mulls Lead-Based Paint Rules for Public and Commercial Buildings


By Andy Bowman, Attorney, Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP

EPA is considering whether lead-based paint hazards created during renovation, repair and painting (RRP) activities in public and commercial buildings (P&CBs) would warrant regulation. The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) requires EPA to conduct a hazard assessment for those renovation activities in P&CBs that are found to create lead-based paint hazards. In the event hazards are found to exist, TSCA directs EPA to promulgate regulations to address the hazards. EPA already regulates lead-based hazards at residences and child-occupied buildings constructed prior to 1978.

On Aug. 6, 2014, EPA published a document entitled “Approach for Estimating Exposures and Incremental Health Effects from Lead Due to Renovation, Repair and Painting Activities in Public and Commercial Buildings” (Approach). The Approach describes the modeling methodologies EPA plans to use to assess health risks associated with lead-based paint hazards during RRP activities. EPA is taking comments on the Approach until Sept. 22, 2014. EPA will also conduct an external peer review of the Approach in late 2014.

EPA previously published a document on May 30, 2014, entitled “Framework for Identifying and Evaluating Lead-Based Paint Hazards from Renovation, Repair, and Painting Activities at Public and Commercial Buildings” (Framework). The Framework described possible approaches to identification of lead-based paint hazards at P&CBs. EPA plans to model specific interior and exterior RRP activities at P&CBs to evaluate whether adverse health effects could occur.

EPA has stated that in the event it decides regulation of RRP activities at P&CBs is warranted, it will address identification of hazards, an evaluation of whether hazards occur and any proposed regulatory requirements in a single proposed rule. A decision is not expected until mid-2015 at the earliest.

Comments can be submitted on the Approach and additional supporting documents are available at using docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OPPT-2010-0173.

To view a complete PDF of the Environmental Letter October 2014 Issue, please click here.

To learn more about Andy Bowman and his practice, please visit his profile.


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