March 21, 2017
There has been another change in the effective date of the Risk Management Program (RMP) rule revisions and several other actions taken to delay, modify, or eliminate the RMP rule revisions.
- On March 13, U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced that the previously finalized, but not yet effective, revisions to the RMP rule will be reconsidered. This reconsideration (Reference RIN:2050-AG82) is being made in response to issues raised by a coalition of industry groups (calling themselves the RMP Coalition) in a February 28, 2017 petition to EPA. For now, the effective date of the revisions has been extended by 90 days, to June 19, 2017. EPA has stated that, in the meantime, it will prepare a notice of proposed rulemaking that will provide the public the opportunity to comment on the issues raised in the petition. The Federal Register notice for the delay of the effective date can be found here. Additional information from EPA can be found here.
- Industry groups also took action March 13, 2017 by filing a lawsuit at the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (American Chemistry Council v. EPA, D.C. Cir., 17-01085, 3/13/17).
- Attorneys General from 11 states have sent a reconsideration petition to EPA requesting that it delay the RMP rule revisions until September 2018.
- Congressional Review Act (CRA) legislation is still pending on the floor of both the House (H.J. Resolution 59) and the Senate (S.J. Resolution 28). If the regulation is repealed under CRA, then EPA is prohibited from promulgating similar regulation, so many industry representatives prefer this pathway.
There are many ways that the RMP Final Rule revisions may be further delayed, modified or even reversed - through EPA action, a win at the D.C. circuit, or by legislative repeal under the Congressional Review Act.
Trinity Consultants will continue to provide updates on related developments. Please do not hesitate to contact Natalie VanLiew at (913) 894-4500 or me if you have any questions. Please check out Trinity Consultants website for regulatory updates that may impact your industry.