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On December 29, 2022, the General Rules for the Hazardous Chemicals Warehouse Storage (GB 15603-2022) was officially released and will enter into force in China on July 1, 2023. It will repeal and replace GB 16603-1995. GB 15603-2022 is a mandatory national standard. It is of great significance to the safety and management of hazardous chemicals as it provides a universal and basic standard for the storage of hazardous chemicals.
On February 7, 2021, Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Ecology and Environment released a notice regarding Strengthening the Supervision on Enterprises in Environmental Management of New Chemicals, in which the Bureau mentioned that it is to enhance the daily environmental management of new chemicals, improve the on-site supervision of environmental enforcement on new chemicals, implement policies and regulations on new chemicals and conduct law enforcement inspections annually.
On December 29, 2022, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE), in conjunction with other Ministries, jointly released the List of New Pollutants for Priority Control (2023 Edition). Previously in September 2022, the MEE published the List of New Pollutants for Priority Control (2022 edition) for public comments. The 2023 edition basically remains consistent with the draft released in September. It contains 14 new pollutants, including: 10 persistent organic pollutants (POPs), two toxic and harmful pollutants, one environmental endocrine disruptor, and one antibiotic. The 2023 edition will come into force on March 1, 2023.
On November 23, 2022, the European Commission released Regulation (EU) 2022/2291 in the Official Journal of the European Union amending Part A of Annex I to Regulation (EU) 2019/1021, in which Unintentional Trace Contaminant (UTC) limit is set for hexachlorobenzene. The Regulation 2022/2291 shall enter into force on the twentieth day following its publication and be applicable in all Member States.
On November 23, 2022, Bill PL 6120/2019 was approved by the Commission of Economic Development, Industry, Trade, and Commercial Services (CDEICS) of the Brazilian Chamber of Deputies and has been submitted to the Commission on Constitution, Justice and Citizenship (CCJS) for further review. If the Bill successfully passes the review, it will act as the Brazilian REACH Regulation. Domestic enterprises involved in exporting chemicals to Brazil should pay close attention to the Bill. If the Bill becomes law, Brazil will become the third country in South America, to set up chemical management rules, after Chile and Colombia.
Shanghai has numerous chemical-related enterprises, including manufacturers and importers. Chemical enterprises and downstream users in the city are the first to be inspected in the annual environmental enforcement inspections. To avoid being punished for violating the Measures for the Environmental Management Registration of New Chemical Substances (MEE Order 12), enterprises need to formulate strategies to properly cope with the law enforcement inspections.
November 16, 2022, Australia has added 8 substances into the Australian Inventory of Industrial Chemicals (AIIC) and revoked the CBI approval of 1 substance under the requirements of the Australian Industrial Chemicals Act.
On November 7, 2022, the Ministry of Emergency Management, in conjunction with other 9 ministries, released the amendments to the Catalog of Hazardous Chemicals 2015. According to the amendments, all diesel fuels, irrespective of their flashpoints, shall be considered as hazardous chemicals and subject to the management of administrative license for hazardous chemicals in China. Previously, only diesel with closed-cup flashpoint <= 60℃ was considered as hazardous chemicals.
On September 27, 2022, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) released the List of New Pollutants under Priority Control 2022 (Draft) for public consultation and comments can be made before October 28, 2022. Most of the substances in the List have already been regulated and restricted in many countries. Details can be checked via CIRS’s APCISS system.
Vietnam’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment published the Draft National Technical Regulation on Thresholds for Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in Articles, Products, Commodities and Equipment (G/TBT/N/VNM/238-TBT notification) on September 15, 2022. The final date for comments shall be 60 days from its notification.