The residential construction industry has been eagerly awaiting an announcement from the EPA regarding the clearance rule. The wait is over and the news is good.
I am happy to send this message out to let contractors know that the EPA has backed of and will not change the cleaning verification process. (See below how 30 commenters made a difference, many from NARI) This will save millions of dollars in unneccessary costs to contractors and consumers.
Here is an excerpt from the EPA site;
Final Regulations and Policy
Clearance Rule (PDF) (113 pp, 390K). On July 15, 2011, EPA finalized its Clearance Rule amending the Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule. The Agency is not imposing additional "clearance" requirements because existing RRP work practices and cleaning protocols effectively reduce lead hazards. The rule also makes minor amendments to the 2008 RRP Rule. For more information, see a new insert page from EPA, to be added to its 2010 Renovate Right Brochure."
I wonder did the efforts of trade associations like The National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) make a difference in the EPA choosing not to demand third party vefification?
I know our efforts n Massachusetts are making a difference with the Department of Labor and Standards. Shawn McCadden and myself have been persistently urging the state to do more on enforcement and awareness. Now we are getting 8 bill boards in Massachusetts and enforcement is happening all over the greater Boston area. On the national level I suspect NARI's new lobbyist in Washington DC is starting to make some difference.
Contractors Voice Makes A Difference
EPA received over 300 comments on its 2010 proposal. (Many commenters were from NARI). Members of the regulated community and other industry commenters were generally concerned that EPA had upset the balance it had struck in the 2008 RRP rule, arguing that a dust wipe testing or clearance requirement would have the effect of holding renovation firms responsible for pre-existing hazards, whether directly by regulation, in the case of the proposed clearance requirements, or indirectly by requiring firms to provide information on post-renovation dust lead levels to the property owner and occupant. While there was little support for dust wipe testing alone, commenters that supported the 2010 proposal generally thought that a clearance requirement should be imposed and expanded to most, if not all, renovations. After carefully weighing the issues at stake and considering the concerns raised by commenters, and as explained in greater detail below, EPA has concluded that, on balance, the information before the Agency does not support imposing a dust wipe testing or clearance requirement on renovations. In particular, EPA is convinced that the work practices established in the 2008 RRP rule are reliable, effective, and safe, and that imposing a dust wipe testing or clearance requirement is unwarranted. Almost all of the commenters were opposed to the proposed provisions requiring only dust wipe testing after certain renovations. Members of the regulated community and other industry commenters argued that a dust wipe testing requirement would have the effect of holding renovation firms responsible for pre-existing hazards, albeit indirectly, by requiring firms to provide information on post-renovation dust lead levels to the property owner andoccupant. This requirement would also have the effect of adding an element that is not generally considered a renovation activity, i.e., taking samples for laboratory analysis, and indeed, would have to be performed by a third party or only after a renovator received training in a separate and distinct discipline—either as a dust wipe sample technician or a lead-based paint inspector. In addition, many argued that the Dust Study generally shows that the RRP work practices are effective at minimizing occupant exposure to dust-lead hazards created by renovations, so additional dust wipe testing or clearance requirements are unnecessary. These commenters noted that this is particularly true for the renovations for which EPA proposed to require only dust wipe testing, because those renovations were specifically tested in the Dust Study. In addition, commenters suggested that the categories of jobs for which dust wipe testing or clearance would be required were arbitrary and not based on sufficient evidence."
Have a great weekend guys and gals.
mark the coach
"one voice for the residential construction industry"