Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)

Updated June 28, 2010

What is TSCA?

The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is a set of EPA regulations (40 CFR 700-799) designed to review new chemicals for environmental and health risks before they are widely distributed in commerce.  The TSCA regulations also provide EPA with the power to restrict or ban the circulation of chemicals currently in commerce that are known to cause harm to the environment or human health (e.g., PCBs and asbestos).  In fact, the TSCA regulations include individual standards for managing PCBs, asbestos and other chemicals which EPA has prohibited from further production.  Though TSCA is most frequently applicable to industrial and manufacturing facilities, EPA is also concerned with university research activities that may be subject TSCA, specifically the production and transfer or shipment of new chemicals – those that are not formally listed in the TSCA Inventory.