Top EHS regulatory changes for Canada and the United States – November 2021

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Here are a few noteworthy EHS regulatory changes for Canada and the United States in November 2021. We cover EHS legislation and standards for over 100 countries and 200 jurisdictions. If you would like to track legislative changes for specific regions, countries, or jurisdictions, we are happy to help. Please send us a request for more information here and we will contact you shortly.

 

Canada – Federal

New Principal Document – Notice with respect to bisphenol A (BPA) and BPA structural analogues and functional alternatives

Published Date: 13 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

This notice requires that certain manufacturers, importers, and users of bisphenol A report information with respect to the substance to the Minister of the Environment no later than March 16, 2022.

Canada – Alberta

New Principal Document – Occupational Health and Safety Code

First Effective Date: 1 December 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry, Office Spaces, Building Management & Maintenance

This regulation sets out general occupational health and safety requirements as well as requirements specific to certain industries and activities.

It notably establishes general requirements respecting hazard assessment, elimination and control, chemical hazards, biological hazards and harmful substances, confined spaces, cranes, hoists and lifting devices, emergency preparedness and response, entrances, walkways, stairways and ladders, fire and explosion hazards, first aid, general safety precautions, lifting and handling loads, hazardous energy management and control, noise exposure, overhead power lines, personal protective equipment, powered mobile equipment, radiation exposure, rigging, safeguards, scaffolds and temporary work platforms, toilets and washing facilities, tools, equipment and machinery, ventilation systems, violence and harassment in the workplace, working alone, and the WHMIS.

It also establishes requirements specific to the following industries and activities: demolition, diving operations, excavating and tunnelling, explosives, forestry, healthcare, mining, oil and gas wells, tree care, utilities, and work requiring rope access.

Amended Document – Radiation Health Administration Regulation
Amending Document – Radiation Health Administration Repeal Regulation

First Effective Date: 1 December 2021
Industry Sector: Public Administration & Institutions

The amended document is being repealed effective 1 December 2021.

Amended Document – Occupational Health and Safety Regulation
Amending Document – Occupational Health and Safety Repeal Regulation

First Effective Date: 1 December 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

The amended document is being repealed effective 1 December 2021.

Amended Document – Occupational Health and Safety Code
Amending Document – Occupational Health and Safety Code Repeal Regulation

First Effective Date: 1 December 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

The amended document is being repealed effective 1 December 2021.

Newfoundland & Labrador

New Principal Document – Radiation Health and Safety Act, 2021

Published Date: 4 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

This Act regulates the management and operation of radiation equipment in the Province. It contains provisions that cover the registration of radiation equipment, the responsibilities of owners of radiation equipment, the implementation of safety measures and procedures, the roles and powers of inspectors, and related offences and penalties. It will replace the Radiation Health and Safety Act.

Canada – Nova Scotia

New Principal Document – Environmental Goals and Climate Change Reduction Act

First Effective Date: 5 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

This Act creates “a plan to guide Nova Scotia toward a cleaner, healthier environment.” It establishes the Government’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and goals for climate change mitigation and adaptation, transportation, land protection, water and air quality, environmental assessments, sustainable procurement, aquaculture and food, growth of the circular economy, and business, training and education supports, as well as the Government’s regulation-making authority for achieving these goals. It also establishes the Sustainable Communities Challenge Fund and a “Climate Change Plan for Clean Growth.” It also replaces the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act.

Canada – Quebec

Amended Document – Regulation respecting the regulatory scheme applying to activities on the basis of their environmental impact
Amending Document – Regulation to amend mainly the Regulation respecting compensation for adverse effects on wetlands and bodies of water and other regulatory provisions

First Effective Date: 31 December 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document adds “new activities eligible for a declaration of compliance pursuant to [the] Environment Quality Act (chapter Q-2) and new activities exempted from the [requirement to obtain a ministerial authorisation under the Environment Quality Act].”

Amended Document – Regulation respecting compensation for adverse effects on wetlands and bodies of water
Amending Document – Regulation to amend mainly the Regulation respecting compensation for adverse effects on wetlands and bodies of water and other regulatory provisions

First Effective Date: 31 December 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

The amended document specifies that the regulation applies to activities subject to ministerial authorization under the Environment Quality Act, adds “details for certain activities exempted from the payment of a financial contribution to compensate for adverse effects on wetlands and bodies of water, and adds new activities,” makes “changes to the activities for which the payment of a financial contribution may be replaced by work to restore or create wetlands and bodies of water, and adds new activities,” specifies “the contents of the plan for completing the work” where it is possible to replace the payment of a financial contribution by work to restore or create wetlands and bodies of water, and adjusts “the parameters used to calculate the amount of the financial contribution to better reflect the reality of development in Québec’s boreal regions and the abundance of wetlands in those regions.”

New Principal Document – Regulation respecting oil-fired heating appliances

First Effective Date: 31 December 2021
Industry Sector: Building Management & Maintenance, Construction Industry

This regulation gradually prohibits the installation and repair of certain space and water heaters powered in whole or in part by oil in certain new and existing residential buildings.

United States – California

Amended Document – CCR Chapter 17-3-1 Air Resources Board
Amending Document – Criteria Air Pollutants and Toxic Air Contaminants

First Effective Date: 1 January 2022
Industry Sector: General Industry, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document expands “a uniform statewide system of annual reporting of emissions, criteria pollutants, and toxic air contaminants” for additional reporters “using permitted emissions and pollutant-based thresholds to establish applicability.” It includes “‘abbreviated’ reporting requirements for some permitted processes […] requires reporting for diesel-powered portable equipment [and] coordinates CTR [Criteria Pollutant and Toxics Emissions Reporting] reporting requirements with the Air Toxics Hot Spots Emissions Inventory Criteria and Guidelines.”

United States – Florida

Amended Document – FS Chapter XXIX-381 Public Health: General Provisions
Amending Document – An act relating to COVID-19 mandates; creating s. 381.00317, F.S.; prohibiting private employers from imposing a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for employees unless certain individual exemptions are made available; defining the term “COVID-19”; requiring employers to use certain forms for submission of employee exemption statements; specifying conditions for claiming exemptions; […] providing an effective date.

First Effective Date: 18 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry, Office Spaces, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document prohibits private employers from imposing a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for employees that does not include exemptions for certain medical reasons, periodic testing, or employer-provided personal protective equipment, and prohibits educational institutions from imposing a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for students.

United States – New York

Amended Document – NYCL Article LAB-20-C Retaliatory Action by Employers
Amending Document – AN ACT to amend the labor law, in relation to retaliatory actions by employers

First Effective Date: 26 January 2022
Industry Sector: General Industry, Office Spaces, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document revises the definition of “employee” to include former employees and independent contractors, revises definitions of “law, rule or regulation” and “public body” for clarity,  expands the definition of “retaliatory action” to include additional prohibited actions by an employer, and requires employers to conspicuously notify employees of their protections, rights, and obligations.

Amended Document – NYCL Title ENV-37-1 Substances Hazardous to the Environment
Amending Document – AN ACT to amend the environmental conservation law, in relation to prohibiting coal tar in pavement products

First Effective Date: 8 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry, Office Spaces, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document prohibits the sale and use of coal tar (“a viscous substance obtained by the destructive distillation of coal and containing levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in excess of ten thousand milligrams per kilogram”) in pavement products for driveways and parking areas.

United States – North Carolina

Amended Document – NCAC Chapter 15A-18 Environmental Health
Amending Document – NCAC Chapter 15A-18 Environmental Health 2021-11-01 Amendments

First Effective Date: 1 October 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

The amended document replaces existing rules for on-site wastewater treatment with a new set of rules that “clarify, and align the state’s on-site wastewater rules with current practice and law, facilitate innovation, standardize terminology, and improve organization and consistency of application across the state,” and “[aligns itself] with the United States Food and Drug Administration’s 2017 Food Code and Supplement as well as to reflect current requirements and practices and clarify language.”

Amended Document – NCGS Article 143-21 Water and Air Resources
Amending Document – Current Operations Appropriations Act of 2021

First Effective Date: 30 June 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry, Building Management & Maintenance

The amended document provides exemptions to dam safety laws for certain dams that are less than 20 feet in height or that have an impoundment capacity of fewer than 15 acre-feet upon demonstration by a qualified engineer that the dam is not a high hazard dam, and provides that for projects that are applying for grants under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, the project consists of “all the landowners and other participants under a project design contract.”

United States – Oregon

New Principal Document – OAR Division 340-239 Landfill Gas Emissions

First Effective Date: 4 October 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

This Division establishes methane emissions rules for landfills and applies to all landfills in the state with certain exceptions. It requires owners and operators of solid waste landfills to obtain operating permits and install gas collection and control systems, requires the preparation and submittal of design plans for modifications of existing gas collection and control systems, and contains recordkeeping and reporting requirements for the landfill’s methane generation and gas collection and control systems’ operations. It also contains operational and design standards for gas collection and control systems and requirements for performance tests, monitoring, and wellhead sampling. It permits the permanent shutdown and removal of a gas collection and control system under certain conditions and provides mechanisms for owners and operators of landfills to request alternatives to compliance measures, monitoring requirements, test methods and procedures.

United States –  Pennsylvania

Amended Document – PC Chapter 25-250 Administration of Land Recycling Program
Amending Document – Administration of Land Recycling Program

First Effective Date: 20 November 2021
Industry Sector: General Industry

The amended document updates health standard medium-specific concentrations (MSCs) for certain regulated substances, adds groundwater and soil MSCs for three perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) substances, and clarifies certain administrative requirements for remediators and municipalities regarding public participation and acceptable “practical quantitation limits” for laboratory testing precision.

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