PIP (3:1)On Oct. 21, 2021, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced an extension of compliance dates for the requirements promulgated under the Persistent, Bioaccumulative, and Toxic (PBT) Chemical Regulations.

The announcement, along with the accompanying Pre-Published Notice of Rulemaking, proposes a further extension of the phased-in prohibition on the processing and distribution of certain articles containing phenol, Isopropylated phosphate (3:1) (PIP (3:1), as well as the associated recordkeeping requirements, from March 8, 2022 to Oct. 31, 2024.  As part of this proposal, the EPA is seeking additional information from industry to support further compliance date extensions for affected articles as well as the intension to commence new rulemaking efforts on PIP 3:1 and the other four PBT chemicals in 2023.

On Jan. 6, 2021, the EPA published a final rulemaking regarding five PBT substances. The most impactful of these, Phenol, Isopropylated Phosphate (3:1) (PIP 3:1); Regulation of Persistent, Bioaccumulative, and Toxic Chemicals Under TSCA Section 6(h)

  • Prohibited all manufacturing, processing, and distribution of PIP (3:1) in commerce
  • Required manufacturers, processors, and distributors of PIP (3:1), or articles containing PIP (3:1), to maintain business records related to the Rule’s restrictions, communicate these requirements to downstream customers, and ensure the substance is not released to any bodies of water

PIP (3:1) is a plasticizer, flame retardant, and anti-wear additive, widely integrated for use in electronics, safety systems, and hydraulic fluids for its capacity to prevent the breakdown of parts and components under extreme conditions. The functionality of this material provides several crucial characteristics needed to ensure compliance with current safety, emissions, and fire prevention regulations.

AEM and various other stakeholders continually engaged with EPA policymakers over the last year through industry comments and face-to-face meetings to explain the challenges facing OEMs in meeting the requirements of this regulation.  In response to these efforts, EPA issued several enforcement extensions and indicated through rulemaking commentary that the industry’s issues are being carefully considered.     

AEM’s Safety & Product Leadership Department intends to draft additional comments in response to the EPA’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.  Those who wish to learn more about recent PIP 3:1 activity or participate in the process are encouraged to reach out to AEM’s Regulatory Compliance Steering Committee or contact AEM’s Jason Malcore at jmalcore@aem.org.

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