California Chemicals Lawyers
The chemicals industry is one of the largest manufacturing industries in the United States. The business of chemistry plays a vital and growing role in the U.S. economy. According to the American Chemistry Council, the U.S. chemistry industry represents an $801 billion enterprise with 15% of the worlds chemicals produced by America’s chemical manufacturers. In 2014 alone, U.S. chemicals industry exports were responsible for producing $191 billion.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security divides facilities in the chemistry sector into five core segments: (1) basic chemicals; (2) specialty chemicals; (3) agricultural chemicals; (4) pharmaceuticals; and (5) consumer products. The majority of these facilities are privately owned by companies that are subject to strict and expanding governmental regulation. These laws and regulations create substantial challenges for members of the chemicals industry and require an advanced understanding of environmental law and the distinct characteristics of the individual chemical manufacturers. In addition, the chemical industry pervades and crosses over into other products, including consumer products. Chemicals in the manufacturing process and used in consumer products are heavily regulated. Similarly, pesticides are also heavily regulated because of the chemicals in the products.
Environmental Laws and Regulations Impacting the Chemicals Industry
Toxics regulations can seriously affect a company’s bottom line. Under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the EPA has broad authority to regulate the products and operations of businesses that are part of the chemicals industry. TSCA subjects companies to complex reporting requirements that often involve confidential information. Successful navigation of these requirements necessitates a team of skilled environmental lawyers with an understanding of both the law and industry operations.
Pesticides including traditional chemical products, products manufactured using biotechnology, agricultural products, products for homeowners, and any product containing an antimicrobial constituent are regulated by the EPA under TSCA. Manufacturers and retailers of pesticide-containing products must develop comprehensive strategies for evaluating risks and benefits and addressing risk concerns. These businesses need to pay close attention to the environmental rules and regulations governing their activities or they may find themselves in regulatory agency proceedings and arbitrations mandated by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) , the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), and state analogs.
There are also numerous state, federal and international chemical-specific requirements governing consumer products. These legal mandates cover a broad range of consumer products from restricting lead in paint and children’s jewelry, to prohibiting the use of bisphenol A, or BPA, in baby bottles and children’s drinking cups.
Providing Guidance to the Chemicals Sector
The attorneys at Bick Law work with companies operating across all segments of the chemicals industry. We understand the complex regulatory issues and business challenges facing chemical and pesticide manufacturers. Our California chemicals lawyers regularly guide industry clients through the complicated maze of federal, state and local laws, regulations and enforcement actions that impact and govern their daily and long-term business operations.
At Bick Law we believe in taking a comprehensive approach to environmental challenges. Our lawyers counsel chemical manufacturers and other companies on environmental issues that may arise at any stage of the product life cycle, from initial product development and manufacturing, to labeling, shipping, waste disposal and recycling. We assist companies in developing environmental policies and procedures that are best tailored to their needs and comply with federal, state and local statutes and regulations. Our focus is to help our clients identify and resolve potential issues before they turn into difficult and costly legal problems. We also assist chemical companies with commercial and real estate transactions and work to obtain any permits and approvals they may need to manufacture their products.
When members of the chemicals industry are involved in high stakes environmental litigation, enforcement actions, or in need of reporting or compliance counseling, our legal team is well-positioned to handle the matter. We carefully analyze the situation from all angles to develop strategies that will bring the case to a quick resolution while protecting our clients’ business, financial and legal interests.