EPA and OSHA Collaborate to Protect Workers from New

On January 8, 2021, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that formalizes their efforts to protect workers from the health and environmental risks of new chemicals. While the MOU providing for coordination and communication between the two agencies is brand new, their joint effort has been ongoing as a requirement of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). This Act, signed into law in 1976, regulates commerce and protects human health and the environment by requiring testing and necessary use restrictions on certain chemical substances. It was amended by the Lautenbert Chemical Safety Act of 2016, which added new requirements for the EPA to work with OSHA on workplace exposure to new chemicals.

According to a news release by the EPA, highlights of the MOU include:1

  • Establishing designated staff and management points of contact from each agency to discuss and resolve workplace exposure issues related to EPA’s review of new chemicals.
  • Providing OSHA with regular updates on the EPA’s new chemical determinations, including any necessary worker protection identified during EPA’s review of new chemicals.
  • Documenting the EPA’s role in identifying and notifying OSHA of the need for formal consultation on the EPA’s review of new chemicals.


  1. To view the EPA press release, visit:


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