Up and Coming
A new year brings new opportunities. With a new presidential administration I think this year and the next couple of years will be busy for occupational environmental, health and safety professionals. New executive orders have been signed and so, we are off!
In the environmental realm, combating climate change is one of the primary focuses. The USA rejoined the Paris Agreement challenging us to catch up. We could see more attention towards carbon capture and storage projects and activities, including geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide. This is where carbon dioxide is pumped at high pressure into geologic formations or deep saline aquifers. Under the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finished their final risk evaluation for C.I. Pigment violet 29 (PV29). PV29 is a manufactured chemical pigment used in paints, coatings, and plastics. In 2015, more than 600,000 pounds of it was manufactured in the US. Furthermore, EPA and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) signed a memorandum of understanding to coordinate and communicate between the two agencies. No doubt, Michael Regan who is head of the EPA, will have no shortage of work to do.
In the health and safety realm, there have been swift maneuvers all over the place. OSHA will probably focus on establishing federal regulations related to this COVID-19 pandemic. Most certainly James S. Frederick, who is head of OSHA, also has his work cut out for him too. Virginia is the first state to adopt a permanent workplace virus regulation. Although other states including Oregon and Michigan already established COVID-19 emergency temporary standards (ETS) back in 2020. Virginia, and states that have adopted ETS, could be a guidance for those states who want to follow suit. California already adopted an aerosol transmissible diseases regulation. Wildfire smoke has increasingly become an air quality problem during the warmer months of the year. Both an environmental as well as health and safety issue and challenge. First in the nation, California adopted a wildfire smoke regulation which could be used as a guidance for other states, such as Washington State’s Labor and Industries (the state’s OSHA agency) who has begun public meetings regarding their efforts to establishing a wildfire smoke regulation for the state.
Of course, there could be more to come. Now is the time to be planning how your organization will meet upcoming regulatory requirements and adjust processes for this climate change focus. Not to mention, ponder and plan how your organization can benefit from as well as be part of innovation as alternative energy continues to gain traction.
We can help your organization as you plan for this upcoming year. Contact us today and lets chat about how we can help you accomplish your goals and meet your needs.
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