New EPA Rule on Greenhouse Gases References 42 ASTM Standards
Standards Cited in Ruling Developed by 11 Different ASTM Technical Committees
ASTM International is a primary standards contributor to a recent rule approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on greenhouse gas reporting by large sources and suppliers in the U.S.
The final Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Rule was enacted in response to the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008 (H.R. 2764; Public Law 110-161). Under the rule, manufacturers of vehicles and engines and other entities that emit 25,000 metric tons or more per year of greenhouse gas emissions are required to submit annual reports to EPA.
The following ASTM technical committees have standards referenced in the EPA rule:
The standards referenced are test methods and specifications that cover a diverse set of topics that includes aviation fuel, water, coal sampling systems and hydraulic cement.
In addition to the standards listed in the EPA rule, ASTM committees are currently working on several proposed new standards related to climate change. These include WK21096, Guide for Disclosures Related to Climate Change Exposures/Risks, and WK21808, Guide for Climate Change Assessment and Risk Management, both under development by ASTM International Committee E50 on Environmental Site Assessment, Risk Management and Environmental Action.
The rule was signed by Lisa P. Jackson, U.S. EPA administrator, on Sept. 22 and goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2010. First annual reports are to be submitted to the EPA in 2011, covering calendar year 2010.
Gases covered by the rule are:
The purpose of the EPA’s new reporting system is to provide better understanding of the sources of greenhouse gases, which are produced by burning fossil fuels and through industrial and biological processes.
Businesses will be able to use data compiled in the reports to track their own emissions and compare them to similar facilities. Report data may also identify cost-effective ways to reduce future greenhouse gas emissions.
ASTM Notes from China
ASTM Representatives Attend Workshops on Water, Textiles
Liu Fei, ASTM International’s chief representative in China, attended two different workshops on water standardization in September. On Sept. 9-10, he spoke at the International Workshop on Standardization of Water Resources Protection, organized by the China Association of Standardization and the Chongqing Association for Standardization in Chongqing, China.
About 150 participants from science and technology research, standardization, enterprise and government attended the workshop, which focused on the standardization and regulation of water resources as well as technology innovation and application of water resources protection. During the workshop, Liu Fei spoke on ASTM’s broad coverage of water resources standardization, the role that global membership and the consensus process plays in ensuring the quality and relevance of ASTM standards, and ASTM water standards that are part of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations.
On Sept. 16, Liu Fei attended the 2009 International Symposium on Water Environment and Safety in Beijing, where he discussed ASTM and its water-related standards during a panel discussion regarding the policy, regulations and standards on environmental protection related to water resources. Other panels at the symposium focused on the current status and development of water resources and the saety of drinking water in China as well as cutting edge technology in water treatment.
Nancy Hu, China operations manager, ASTM, spoke t a joint seminar on textiles held by ASTM International and the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists along with the China Textile Information Center and the China Textile Association on Sept. 28. Hu presented information on ASTM during the event, which was attended by 150 participants with an interest in textiles in China.
On Sept. 11, a Chinese delegation comprising government officials dealing with quality, safety, technical supervision and standards compliance from JiangsuProvince, China, visited ASTM headquarters. The purpose of the visit was to learn about ASTM and its operations, government laws and regulations dealing with product standards, quality, safety, supervision and compliance. The meeting provided an opportunity to discuss future cooperation and collaboration. Shown in the upper photo: Teresa Cendrowska (left), vice president, Global Cooperation, ASTM, and Mr. Xu Mingxiang (right), section chief, Jiangsu Quality and Technical Supervision Bureau. Shown in the lower photo: Members of the Jiangsu delegation and ASTM International staff.
Manuel Lascarro, director, special projects, Asociación Colombiana de Productores de Concreto (ASOCRETO), and a former ASTM International board member, visited Instituto Uruguayo de Normas Técnicas (UNIT), the national standards body of Uruguay, on behalf of ASTM on Sept. 3. The purpose of the visit was to discuss the existing memorandum of understanding between ASTM and UNIT, signed in November 2001. Future collaborations between ASTM and UNIT were also discussed, including a possible virtual meeting on the topic of cement. Shown, left to right: Pablo Benia, director, UNIT; Lascarro; Eduardo Alvarez Mazza, president, UNIT; and Morgan Martinez, director, Concrexur S.A.
ASTM and Other Standards Organizations Speak to Members of U.S. Congress
Three-Part Series Provides Background on U.S. Standards System
James Thomas, president, ASTM International, spoke at an event on Oct. 2 in Washington, D.C., that introduced U.S. Congressional staff to the U.S. private sector-led approach to standardization. All congressional staff members were welcome to attend the event, which was co-sponsored by the following organizations:
At the event, Thomas spoke about how standards impact trade. Also speaking were S. Joe Bhatia, president and CEO, ANSI, who spoke about the U.S. standards system, and Gordon Gillerman, chief of standards services, National Institute of Standards and Technology, who addressed the public/private partnership.
Each of the speakers reinforced the fact that the U.S. standards system works effectively and identified some of the successes that underpin the strong public/private standardization partnership.
The event was the third in a three-part series of briefings intended to provide congressional staff with the fundamental background to understand the U.S. standards system in theory and in practice, the manner in which U.S. governments use and reference standards, and the impact of standards on global commerce. The first briefing was presented by Jeffrey Grove, ASTM International; Ann Weeks, UL; Robert Garfield, American Frozen Food Institute; and Len Kruger, Congressional Research Services.
The second briefing in the series featured federal agencies that work with standards development organizations. Gordon Gillerman, NIST; Jay Howell, U.S. Consumer Production Safety Commission; Donald Marlowe, U.S. Food and Drug Administration; Mary Saunders, U.S. Department of Commerce; Brenda Smith, Customs and Border Protection; and Jeff Weiss, Office of the United States Trade Representative, all participated. They discussed how standards impact trade and safety, reduce government workload, funnel into the rulemaking process, and how they are enforced. Additionally, Shaun Donnelly of the National Association of Manufacturers represented the industry perspective.
The briefings provided insight into the standardization process, which plays an important role in legislation such as the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, which was signed into law on Aug. 14, 2008, and which imposes new requirements on manufacturers of apparel, shoes, personal care products, accessories and jewelry, home furnishings, bedding, toys and electronics.
ASTM/CIPET Collaborations Discussed
Representatives from India’s Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology Visit ASTM
On Aug. 21, Sanjay Nayak, director general, Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology, and Bijoy Chatterjee, secretary of the Government of India, Department of Chemical and Petrochemicals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, and president of the CIPET Governing Council, visited ASTM International headquarters. The meeting afforded an opportunity for a review of the history and ongoing work of both CIPET and ASTM International and discussions about future collaboration.
Nayak and Chatterjee were accompanied by Ramani Narayan, Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at Michigan State University and former member of the board of directors of ASTM International. Joining the meeting from the ASTM staff were James Thomas, president; John Pace, vice president, publications and marketing; Teresa Cendrowska, vice president, global cooperation; James Olshefsky, director, external relations; and Brynn Murphy, manager, ASTM Committee D20 on Plastics.
The highlight of the meeting was the formal signing of the letter of implementation for the training and collaboration program scheduled to take place in November, when eight technical experts from several CIPET campuses will attend an intensive two-week program that will include a pre-event virtual orientation program, training at ASTM International headquarters, participation in the November committee week meetings of Committee D20 and on-site visits to various company locations. The objective of the program is to establish a network between CIPET and the members of Committee D20 as well as to facilitate long-term technical participation by CIPET in the standards development work of ASTM International.