Submitted by Daland R. Juberg, Chair, SOT TSCA Task Force
On Monday, February 9, 2015, Roll Call online published an opinion editorial by Society of Toxicology (SOT) 2014–2015 President Norbert E. Kaminski, “TSCA Reform Should Embrace the Best Application of Toxicological Science—a Perspective from its Practitioners|Commentary.” In this editorial, Dr. Kaminski, in drawing upon the experiences and recent activity of the SOT TSCA Task Force, notes that the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is “outdated and in serious need of modernization.” This editorial provides a discussion of the important role of Toxicology that “provides science and information essential to supporting innovation and addressing human and environmental health, and it is essential that any TSCA reform legislation reflect the human health and economic value of science-informed decision making.”
Dr. Kaminski also includes the three principles articulated by the SOT TSCA Task Force and conveyed to Congressional members since the formation of this group in 2010.
- Ensure the revised legislation affords flexibility in selection of the best available science for generating and evaluating information used in the safety and risk assessment process.
- Ensure protection of the authority of the US Environmental Protection Agency, working with the scientific community, to judge when and how to apply new techniques and methods.
- Ensure the terms and concepts used in the legislative language that apply to the science of toxicology are consistent, accurate, and unambiguous.
Moreover, he emphasized the application of the “best available science” because “understanding is not static but is constantly evolving. Congress should resist the temptation to try to spell out specific scientific methods in law and allow scientific evolutionary progress to continue.” He concluded by stating that “SOT is deeply committed to providing knowledge and working with all stakeholders so that sound, progressive and protective TSCA legislation will emerge in 2015." To read the complete opinion editorial, visit the Roll Call website.