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Federal Environmental Regulations Affecting the Electronics Industry

EPA 744-B-95-001
September 1995
Design for the Environment Program
Economics, Exposure and Technology Division
Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics
United States Environmental Protection Agency


A special thanks is extended to the participants of the Design for the Environment Printed Wiring Board Project and the Environmental, Health & Safety Committee of the Institute for Interconnecting and Packaging Electronic Circuits for their helpful comments.


This discussion of environmental regulations potentially affecting the electronics industry is intended for information purposes only. It is not an official EPA guidance document and should therefore not be relied on by companies in the electronics industry to determine applicable regulatory requirements.

The applicability of many Federal regulations is determined in part by the chemicals being used at a facility. This document covers chemicals that the electronics industry has identified as being in use in the semiconductor manufacturing, printed wiring board manufacturing, semiconductor packaging, and display manufacturing industries. Electronic assembly is not considered in this report. Individual facilities have their own chemical use patterns, however, which means that a particular facility may use chemicals that are not listed in this report or may use some but not all of them. As a result, each facility must identify the universe of rules that apply to it by examining the regulations themselves.

This report only discusses Federal environmental statutes. However, implementation of many Federal programs is delegated to States with programs at least as stringent as the Federal program. Thus, even where Federal regulations apply, State laws may impose additional requirements that are not addressed in this document.

This study covers the following kinds of Federal environmental requirements: Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Superfund and Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, and Toxic Substances Control Act. The study provides an overview of regulations affecting the electronics industry and of the specific chemicals used in the industry that may trigger particular regulatory requirements.

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