WASHINGTON - The Environmental Protection Agency is extending the compliance dates on its final rule for Formaldehyde Emission Standards for Composite Wood Products. The prepublication notice amending the TSCA Title VI compliance dates was issued Sept. 1.

Most notably, EPA has extended by one year the manufactured-by date for compliance with emissions standards, recordkeeping and labeling requirements. Also extended by about three months are the compliance dates for imported and laminated products. The new dates are:

• Manufactured-by date for emissions standards, recordkeeping and labeling: Dec. 12, 2018
• Compliance date for import certification: March 22, 2019
• Provisions applicable to producers of laminated products: March 22, 2024

The Final Rule also extends until March 22, 2019, the transitional period during which CARB-approved Third Party Certifiers (TPCs) may certify composite wood products under TSCA Title VI without an EPA-approved TSCA Title VI Accrediting Body, "so long as the TPC remains approved by CARB, is recognized by EPA, and complies with all aspects of the December 12, 2016 final rule."

These changes automatically become part of the TSCA Title VI regulation once published in the Federal Register, which should occur early next week. 

"EPA believes that extension of these compliance dates and the transitional period for CARB TPCs adds needed regulatory flexibility for regulated entities, reduces compliance burdens, and helps to prevent disruptions to supply chains while still ensuring that compliant composite wood products enter the supply chain in a timely manner," the prepublication notice states.

Originally published in the Federal Register on Dec. 12, 2016, the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Title VI was extended twice previously before having the direct final action withdrawn on July 6, 2017, in response to public comments.  EPA noted that this final rule addresses feedback received by industry groups including: Composite Panel Association, American Home Furnishings Alliance, Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers, International Wood Products Association, Recreation Vehicle Industry Association, National Retail Foundation, and Retail Industry Leaders Association.

"The Agency believes that this final rule balances the further extended compliance dates commenters noted would be needed, and the proposed compliance dates in the May 24, 2017 (82 FR 23735) direct final rule that several trade groups concurred with in their public comments."

Among the groups impacted by the rule are:

Veneer, plywood, and engineered wood product manufacturing (NAICS code 3212)
Manufactured home (mobile home) manufacturing (NAICS code 321991)
Prefabricated wood building manufacturing (NAICS code 321992)
Furniture and related product manufacturing (NAICS code 337)
Furniture merchant wholesalers (NAICS code 42321)
Lumber, plywood, millwork, and wood panel merchant wholesalers (NAICS code 42331)
Other construction material merchant wholesalers (NAICS code 423390)
Furniture stores (NAICS code 4421)
Building material and supplies dealers (NAICS code 4441)
Manufactured (mobile) home dealers (NAICS code 45393)
Motor home manufacturing (NAICS code 336213)
Travel trailer and camper manufacturing (NAICS code 336214)
Recreational vehicle (RV) dealers (NAICS code 441210)
Recreational vehicle merchant wholesalers (NAICS code 423110)
Engineering services (NAICS code 541330)
Testing laboratories (NAICS code 541380)