21st Annual Green Chemistry & Engineering Conference | June 13-15, 2017 | Reston, Virginia

Advancing the Design and Selection of Safer Commercial Chemicals: How do We Begin?

Symposium Organizers: Stephen C. DeVito, Chief, Data Quality & Analysis Branch, Toxics Release Inventory Program, United States Environmental Protection Agency; Stanley P. Kolis, Research Advisor, Small Molecule Design and Development, Lilly Research Labs, Eli Lilly and Company

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) has identified 90 commercial chemicals that, because of their hazard or exposure potential, warrant further in-depth assessment and possible risk management action. According to the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) database, the barrier reported most frequently by industrial facilities to implementing pollution prevention measures on most of these chemicals is “No known substitutes or alternative technologies”. Moreover, many of these same chemicals are used commercially throughout the world, and are released to the environment or otherwise managed as waste in large quantities each year globally.

The good news is that a wealth of experimental toxicity, pharmacokinetic, high-through-put screening (HTPS), and other data exists on many of these problematic chemicals. Much insight could be gained from an analysis and integration of these data, with the intent of elucidating structure-toxicity relationships and inferring rules that can be used to design new chemicals of reduced toxicity that may serve as viable substitutes. To this end, a concerted effort on the part of the federal government, academia, and industry is needed to identify safer alternatives to the problematic chemicals, or alternative technologies that obviate their need.

This session will focus on the prioritization of toxic chemicals that are used in commerce globally, and foster discussion on how available pharmacokinetic, toxicity, toxic mechanism, structure-activity relationship, HTPS, and other data can be used with alternatives assessment constructs to design safer and more sustainable substitutes. The session will be divided into two parts. In the first part, recognized speakers from industry, academia and governmental/non-governmental organizations will give presentations that will cover the following themes:

a) Commercial chemicals that are used globally and for which governmental agencies and/or non-governmental organizations have identified as potentially problematic;

b) Development of new green chemistry or engineering approaches by academic and industrial scientists/engineers for the substitution or removal of commercial chemicals that are used globally and of concern to environmental authorities throughout the world. (These presentations will cover both developmental and applied/practical research.)

A panel discussion will follow the presentations with the title “How Can Industry, Academia, Governmental and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) use Available Information, Technology and Regulations to Decrease the Use of Chemicals of Toxic Concern?” The panel will serve as a platform for an interactive discussion, and will consist of well-known representatives from industry, academia, governmental and nongovernmental organizations.