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Notice

Preliminary Risk Assessments for the Contaminants of Pentachlorophenol (Hexachlorobenzene and Dioxins/Furans); Notice of Availability

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

This notice announces the availability of documents that were developed as part of EPA's six-phase public participation reregistration process for pentachlorophenol (PCP). The Preliminary Risk Assessment (PRA) for PCP was published in the Federal Register on November 30, 2004, with a 60-day public comment period which ended on January 31, 2005. This notice announces the availability of the PRAs for hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and dioxins/furans, which are contaminants produced during the manufacture of PCP, and opens a 60-day public comment period.

DATES:

Comments, identified by docket identification (ID) number OPP-2004-0402, must be received on or before May 31, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted electronically, by mail, or through hand delivery/courier. Follow the detailed instructions as provided in Unit I. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Heather A. Garvie, Antimicrobials Division (7510C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (703) 308-0034; fax number: (703) 308-8481; e-mail address: garvie.heather@epa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General Information

A. Does this Action Apply to Me?

This action is directed to the public in general. You may be potentially affected by this action if you manufacture, sell, distribute, or use PCP products. Since other entities may also be interested, the Agency has not attempted to describe all the specific entities that may be affected by this action. If you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

B. How Can I Get Copies of this Document and Other Related Information?

1. Docket. EPA has established an official public docket for this action under docket ID number OPP-2004-0402. The official public docket consists of the documents specifically referenced in this action, any public comments received, and other information related to this action. Although a part of the official docket, the public docket does not include Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. The official public docket is the collection of materials that is available for public viewing at the Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1801 S. Bell St., Arlington, VA. This docket facility is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The docket telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

2. Electronic access. You may access this Federal Register document electronically through the EPA Internet under the “Federal Register” listings at http://www.epa.gov/​fedrgstr/​. Copies of the PRAs for PCP and its contaminants HCB and dioxins/furans can also be obtained via http://docket.epa.gov/​edkpub/​index.jsp/​.

An electronic version of the public docket is available through EPA's electronic public docket and comment system, EPA Dockets. You may use EPA Dockets at http://www.epa.gov/​edocket/​ to submit or view public comments, access the index listing of the contents of the official public docket, and to access those documents in the public docket that are available electronically. Once in the system, select “search,” then key in the appropriate docket ID number.

Certain types of information will not be placed in the EPA Dockets. Information claimed as CBI and other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute, which is not included in the official public docket, will not be available for public viewing in EPA's electronic public docket. EPA's policy is that copyrighted material will not be placed in EPA's electronic public docket but will be available only in printed, paper form in the official public docket. To the extent feasible, publicly available docket materials will be made available in EPA's electronic public Start Printed Page 16277docket. When a document is selected from the index list in EPA Dockets, the system will identify whether the document is available for viewing in EPA's electronic public docket. Although not all docket materials may be available electronically, you may still access any of the publicly available docket materials through the docket facility identified in Unit I.B.1. EPA intends to work towards providing electronic access to all of the publicly available docket materials through EPA's electronic public docket.

For public commenters, it is important to note that EPA's policy is that public comments, whether submitted electronically or in paper, will be made available for public viewing in EPA's electronic public docket as EPA receives them and without change, unless the comment contains copyrighted material, CBI, or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. When EPA identifies a comment containing copyrighted material, EPA will provide a reference to that material in the version of the comment that is placed in EPA's electronic public docket. The entire printed comment, including the copyrighted material, will be available in the public docket.

Public comments submitted on computer disks that are mailed or delivered to the docket will be transferred to EPA's electronic public docket. Public comments that are mailed or delivered to the docket will be scanned and placed in EPA's electronic public docket. Where practical, physical objects will be photographed, and the photograph will be placed in EPA's electronic public docket along with a brief description written by the docket staff.

C. How and to Whom Do I Submit Comments?

You may submit comments electronically, by mail, or through hand delivery/courier. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, identify the appropriate docket ID number in the subject line on the first page of your comment. Please ensure that your comments are submitted within the specified comment period. Comments received after the close of the comment period will be marked “late.” EPA is not required to consider these late comments. If you wish to submit CBI or information that is otherwise protected by statute, please follow the instructions in Unit I.D. Do not use EPA Dockets or e-mail to submit CBI or information protected by statute.

1. Electronically. If you submit an electronic comment as prescribed in this unit, EPA recommends that you include your name, mailing address, and an e-mail address or other contact information in the body of your comment. Also include this contact information on the outside of any disk or CD ROM you submit, and in any cover letter accompanying the disk or CD ROM. This ensures that you can be identified as the submitter of the comment and allows EPA to contact you in case EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties or needs further information on the substance of your comment. EPA's policy is that EPA will not edit your comment, and any identifying or contact information provided in the body of a comment will be included as part of the comment that is placed in the official public docket, and made available in EPA's electronic public docket. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment.

i. EPA Dockets. Your use of EPA's electronic public docket to submit comments to EPA electronically is EPA's preferred method for receiving comments. Go directly to EPA Dockets at http://www.epa.gov/​edocket/​, and follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once in the system, select “search,” and then key in docket ID number OPP-2004-0402. The system is an “anonymous access” system, which means EPA will not know your identity, e-mail address, or other contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment.

ii. E-mail. Comments may be sent by e-mail to opp-docket@epa.gov, Attention: Docket ID Number OPP-2004-0402. In contrast to EPA's electronic public docket, EPA's e-mail system is not an “anonymous access” system. If you send an e-mail comment directly to the docket without going through EPA's electronic public docket, EPA's e-mail system automatically captures your e-mail address. E-mail addresses that are automatically captured by EPA's e-mail system are included as part of the comment that is placed in the official public docket, and made available in EPA's electronic public docket.

iii. Disk or CD ROM. You may submit comments on a disk or CD ROM that you mail to the mailing address identified in Unit I.C.2. These electronic submissions will be accepted in WordPerfect or ASCII file format. Avoid the use of special characters and any form of encryption.

2. By mail. Send your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB) (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001, Attention: Docket ID Number OPP-2004-0402.

3. By hand delivery or courier. Deliver your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1801 S. Bell St., Arlington, VA, Attention: Docket ID Number OPP-2004-0402. Such deliveries are only accepted during the docket's normal hours of operation as identified in Unit I.B.1.

D. How Should I Submit CBI to the Agency?

Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI electronically through EPA's electronic public docket or by e-mail. You may claim information that you submit to EPA as CBI by marking any part or all of that information as CBI (if you submit CBI on disk or CD ROM, mark the outside of the disk or CD ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD ROM the specific information that is CBI). Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2.

In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes any information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket and EPA's electronic public docket. If you submit the copy that does not contain CBI on disk or CD ROM, mark the outside of the disk or CD ROM clearly that it does not contain CBI. Information not marked as CBI will be included in the public docket and EPA's electronic public docket without prior notice. If you have any questions about CBI or the procedures for claiming CBI, please consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

E. What Should I Consider as I Prepare My Comments for EPA?

You may find the following suggestions helpful for preparing your comments:

1. Explain your views as clearly as possible.

2. Describe any assumptions that you used.

3. Provide any technical information and/or data you used that support your views.

4. If you estimate potential burden or costs, explain how you arrived at your estimate.

5. Provide specific examples to illustrate your concerns.

6. Offer alternatives.

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7. Make sure to submit your comments by the comment period deadline identified.

8. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, identify the appropriate docket ID number in the subject line on the first page of your response. It would also be helpful if you provided the name, date, and Federal Register citation related to your comments.

II. Background

The production of pentachlorophenol (PCP) for wood preserving began on an experimental basis in the 1930s. In 1947, nearly 7 million pounds of PCP were reported to have been used in the United States by the commercial wood preserving industry. Pentachlorophenol was one of the most widely used biocides in the United States prior to regulatory actions to cancel and restrict certain non-wood preservative uses in 1987. Prior to the 1987 Federal Register notice which announces Agency action to cancel and restrict certain non-wood uses of PCP, it was registered for use as a herbicide, defoliant, mossicide, and disinfectant. The 1987 notice also specified maximum allowable amounts of HCB and dioxins/furans that could be present in formulations of PCP.

Indoor applications of PCP are prohibited in accordance with the restrictions included in the U.S. EPA Position Document 4 for Wood Preservative Pesticides: Creosote, Pentachlorophenol and Inorganic Arsenicals (1984, amended 1986). The use of PCP to treat wood intended for use in interiors is prohibited, except for a few low-exposure uses (i.e., those support structures which are in contact with the soil in barns, stables, and similar sites and which are subject to decay or insect infestation). Pentachlorophenol is a restricted use pesticide authorized for sale and use by certified applicators only. There are currently eight active products containing PCP (Chemical Code 063001) according to OPP.

III. What Action is the Agency Taking?

EPA is making available preliminary risk assessments that have been developed as part of EPA's process for making reregistration eligibility decisions on HCB and dioxin/furans, contaminants of PCP. This notice starts the 60-day public comment period for the PRAs for HCB and dioxins/furans. The Agency is providing the opportunity, through this notice, for interested parties to provide written comments to the Agency on the PRAs for the chemicals specified in this notice. Such comments could address, for example, the availability of additional data to further refine the risk assessments, or could address the Agency's risk assessment methodologies and assumptions as applied to these specific chemicals. Comments should be limited to issues raised within the PRAs and associated documents. EPA may provide other opportunities for public comment on other science issues associated with PCP. Failure to comment on any issues as part of this opportunity will in no way prejudice or limit a commenter's opportunity to participate fully in later notice and comment processes. All comments should be submitted on or before May 31, 2005.

EPA will review all comments received and address them accordingly. The Agency will then announce and conduct a public technical briefing on the revised risk assessments to provide an opportunity for the public to learn more about the data, information, and methods used to develop the revised risk assessment. The revised assessment will then be made available to the public, and the public will be invited to submit risk management ideas and/or proposals. By allowing access and opportunity for comments on the PRAs, the Agency is seeking to strengthen stakeholder involvement and help ensure its decisions under Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), as amended by the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA), are transparent, and based on the best available information.

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List of Subjects

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Dated: March 24, 2005.

Jack E. Housenger,

Acting Director, Antimicrobials Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.

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[FR Doc. 05-6297 Filed 3-29-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6560-50-S