US appeals court curtails EPA's ability to regulate PFAS under toxic substances law

March 22, 2024

Read the full article by Clark Mindock (Reuters)

"A federal appeals court has vacated two U.S. Environmental Protection Agency orders prohibiting a Texas plastics treatment company from manufacturing toxic “forever chemicals”, opens new tab while treating plastic containers used to hold things like pesticides and household cleaners.

A unanimous three-judge panel of the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday agreed with Inhance Technologies that the EPA overstepped its authority by issuing the orders, since they were rooted in a section of the federal toxic chemical law reserved for regulating "new" chemicals.

The judges said Section 5 of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) doesn’t apply to the fluorination process Inhance has used for four decades to reinforce plastic packaging, even if it was only recently discovered to inadvertently create per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS."