Biobased Products News and Policy Report – Update from Bergeson & Campbell, P.C.

Biobased and Renewable Products Update

Federal

U.S. Senators Join Forces In Bipartisan Bill Supporting Biofuel Producers

On May 21, 2020, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced a bill directing the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary to establish a renewable feedstock reimbursement program. Aiming to support biofuel producers that have been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, this bill can be cited as the Renewable Fuel Feedstock Reimbursement Act of 2020. Under the reimbursement program, biofuel producers will be reimbursed for their feedstock purchases from January 1, 2020, through March 31, 2020, through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC). Eligible parties will consist of those that produce renewable fuel used as transportation fuel and eligible feedstocks mean renewable biomass intended for production of the aforementioned renewable fuel. Furthermore, to be eligible to receive reimbursements, eligible entities must enter into an agreement with the USDA Secretary.

The two U.S. Senators initially introduced this idea in April 2020 as an amendment to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stabilization (CARES) Act, which assists the biofuels industry sector. Assistance, however, was not included in the CARES Act package. Senators Klobuchar and Grassley, with industry support, now hope that this second attempt in support of the biofuels industry follows through.

EPA Issues Small Manufacturer Definition Update Rule In Final

On May 28, 2020, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the issuance of the final rule amending the definition of small manufacturer, including a new definition for small government in accordance with the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Effective June 29, 2020, these amendments affect certain reporting and recordkeeping requirements in the Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule under TSCA.

EPA Seeking Comments On The Registration Of A Novel Biopesticide And Product

On May 22, 2020, EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) announced the opening of a 15-day comment period on its proposal to register a new active ingredient and biopesticide product. The biopesticide product, PHC-91398, would contain Ea peptide 91398, the new active ingredient that was derived from naturally occurring bacterium and induces natural plant defenses. The plant’s reaction to the peptide “activates a hypersensitive response in treated plants, which enables resistance to bacterial and fungal infection, as well as suppression of nematode egg production.” PHC-91398, the biopesticide product, is intended for use on a wide range of agricultural crops and home and garden uses. There will be three product applications:

  • Pre-plant foliar or root dip;
  • Foliar application in greenhouses and fields through a conventional spray, drip, or aerial equipment; and
  • Seed treatment.

Upon review of the data submitted in support of Ea peptide 91398, EPA states that toxicity, allergenicity to humans, and/or adverse effects on non-target organisms is not expected.

EPA is seeking comments, particularly from pesticide users, registrants, public interest organizations, and state, tribal, and local governments. Comments are due on or prior to June 5, 2020.

DOE EERE Announces Funding Availability For Selected Small Businesses

On May 21, 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) announced the availability of approximately $21.3 million in funding for 106 Phase I small business innovation projects. The funds, announced by U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette, are part of DOE’s $53 million available for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) research and development projects. The selected small businesses represent 26 states. Most Phase I awards are $200,000 for a performance period of less than one year. Nine EERE technology offices will fund the awards under 12 topics.

B&C

Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. (B&C®) To Present At The 23rd Annual GC&E Conference, June 15-19, 2020

From June 15-19, 2020, the American Chemical Society (ACS) will be hosting its annual Green Chemistry and Engineering (GC&E) Conference virtually. On June 15, 2020, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (EDT), during the “Enabling a Circular Economy for Materials in the Consumer Goods Industry,” Richard E. Engler, Ph.D., B&C Director of Chemistry, will proudly present his abstract titled “Road-map for Innovators – Commercialization in a Circular Economy.”

In addition, Engler will present a poster titled “TSCA Tutor — The Importance of Regulatory Awareness and Applications” on each day of the conference, from 12:00 p.m. to 12:55 p.m. The poster presentation will highlight B&C’s complete suite of TSCA Tutor® regulatory training courses online and on-demand. This year’s conference registration is free, so check out Engler’s symposia and poster!

For further information on TSCA Tutor®, contact us. Professionals seeking expert, efficient, essential training can preview and enroll in on-demand classes to complete at their own pace and timing. In addition to the newly released online e-learning courses, B&C’s TSCA Tutor® training platform offers live in-person training at a company’s site and customized live webinar training, so that companies can mix and match training modules and training approaches to provide the most suitable combination for their work needs.

TSCA awareness is a critically important element in the 21st century work environment for any business that involves industrial chemicals. The new normal requires awareness of TSCA’s application to a company’s operations to ensure consistent compliance with TSCA regulations and, importantly, to understand and anticipate how EPA’s ongoing implementation of new TSCA will affect a company’s industrial chemical selection and use processes.

TSCA Tutor® online training courses include:

  • Video lessons.
     
  • Detailed handout materials, including copies of all presentations and relevant course materials from EPA and other sources.
     
  • Customizable, yet detailed and ready-to-use Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for the regulatory topic covered in the session.
     

The courses were developed and are presented by members of B&C’s renowned TSCA practice group, which includes six former senior EPA officials; an extensive scientific staff, including seven Ph.D.s; and a robust and highly experienced team of lawyers and non-lawyer professionals extremely well versed in all aspects of TSCA law, regulation, policy, compliance, and litigation.

Online courses are offered at $100 for one-hour modules and $200 for two-hour modules, or $1,400 for the full 12-module training. Courses can be completed at the learner’s own pace, and enrollment is valid for one full year. Interested professionals should visit www.TSCAtutor.com to view sample course segments and purchase modules. Volume discounts are available for companies wishing to purchase courses for multiple employees. Companies interested in live in-person or customized live webinar training should contact [email protected] to schedule.

Interested in learning more about TSCA Tutor®? Contact Heidi Lewis at [email protected].

Events

“TSCA Reform — Four Years Later” Provides A Virtual Update On Where Lautenberg Implementation Stands Today

The Environmental Law Institute (ELI), B&C, and the George Washington University (GWU) Milken Institute School of Public Health are proud to announce its “TSCA Reform — Four Years Later” presentation in the virtual day-long TSCA Annual Conference. Free and open to the public, the virtual conference reflects on the accomplishments and challenges since the implementation of the 2016 Lautenberg Amendments and where TSCA stands today. Panelists will cover “TSCA Implementation: Where Are We Now?,” “Science Policy Issues,” and “Regulatory and Policy Issues” while offering unique insights into the decision-making process of top EPA officials. The virtual conference is scheduled for June 24, 2020, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (EDT). Registrations can be made online.

Speakers include:

Panelists will dive into a host of topics, the current impacts of TSCA on science policies, challenges faced by industry, and regulatory policies, especially those concerning ensuring compliance and enforcement. Mark your calendar to join ELI, B&C, GWU Milken Institute School of Public Health, leading experts, and distinguished keynote speakers in a day-long exploration of the issues and regulations surrounding TSCA. More information about “TSCA Reform — Four Years Later” is available at the ELI website. A recording of last year’s TSCA Reform seminar can be accessed online with a free ELI account, providing a clear example of how this seminar translates to a virtual space.

Other News
 

ScienceDaily, “Biotechnology: Metal Collector Made of Bacteria
 
Plastics Today, “Faster, More-Efficient Chemical Recycling Process Keeps Bioplastics in the Mix
 
KMA Land, “Ernst Grills EPA Chief on RFS, Biofuel Infrastructure
 
GreenBiz, “Using Waste Carbon Feedstocks to Produce Chemicals
 
KFGO, “Biofuel Group Urges U.S. Government to Reject Retroactive Waiver Requests
 

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