EPA’s New Asbestos Determination May Upend Decades of Science and Effect Litigation

National Law Review

by Clifford Pascarella, II
National – The EPA’s Draft Risk Evaluation for Asbestos (“DRE”) generated significant attention from industrial groups, experts, and various other parties involved in asbestos litigation. All sides have significant issues with the DRE as currently drafted. EPA was left with more than 75 comments to consider. Many of these comments include critiques from researchers and trade groups that assert that the proposed evaluation overestimates the risk posed by chrysotile and other asbestos-containing products, and flies in the face of decades of industry, scientific, and regulatory debate and consideration. EPA noted on a June 26, 2020 webinar regarding its ongoing TSCA evaluation that it is firmly committed to publishing a final rule for asbestos exposure by the end of 2020, despite the significant comments it has received. This suggests that the EPA may be prepared to push through its determination in its current form, which will significantly impact the asbestos litigation for years to come. 

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