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European Union
On the afternoon of June 22, the European Commission voted to construct the first regulation on the Carbon Boundary Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) in the worldwide range. This event marks that the European Commission (on July 15, 2021), the Council of the European Union (on March 15, 2022), and the European Parliament (on June 22, 2022) have released their own versions of the CBAM regulations.
On June 10, 2022, the European Commission revised the definition of nanomaterials in a new Recommendation. As a deliverable of the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability, the new Recommendation supports a coherent EU regulatory framework for nanomaterials, helping to align legislation across all sectors. It is expected that different individual sectors will update their internal definition according to the revised definition after the new Recommendation is implemented. Each sector will proceed in accordance with its own timetable.
On May 24, 2022, ECHA conducted a public consultation on 5 chemical substance expected to be or have been proposed to include in the list of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). Comments can be made before July 19, 2022. Once these substances are officially listed in the Stockholm Convention, the European Commission will make amendments to the POPs Regulation according to the Stockholm Convention. The implementation of the POPs Regulation is expected to exert an influence on the manufacture, use and export of products containing these substances. Therefore, enterprises shall take appropriate measures as early as possible.
10 Jun. 2022, ECHA has added 1 substance into the Candidate List of SVHCs. The Candidate List of substances of very high concern (SVHCs) now contains 224 substances that may have serious effects on people or the environment.
May 2022, the European Commission launched a public consultation on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment (known as the RoHS-Directive), which recommended to add Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBP-A) and medium-chain chlorinated paraffins (MCCPs) into the List of RoHS Restricted Substances. If this draft is approved, the number of the RoHS Restricted Substances will be increased from 10 to 12. The European Commission is planned to adopt the it in the fourth quarter of 2022 and the restriction measures of these two substances shall be subject to the final decision of the Commission.
The Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) adopted their legislative report on the regulation establishing a Carbon Broader Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) with 49 votes for, 33 against and 5 abstentions on May 17. According to the press released by the European Parliament, the CBAM legislative report, which is drafted by the ENVI and represents the stance of the European Parliament, has a broader scope and faster implementation compared with the Draft CBAM released by European Commission in July 2021.
In April 2022, the European Commission has released the proposal on fluorinated greenhouse gases (F-gas) was released by the EU, which would amend Directive (EU) 2019/1937 and repeal Regulation (EU) No 517/2014. This Regulation aims to further tighten the control on hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and fluorinated greenhouse gases (F-gas). If the revised Regulation gets approved, it will significantly influence enterprises that export fluorinated gases to the EU as well as enterprises that involve in pre-charged equipment such as refrigeration, air conditioners, and heat pump equipment charged with hydrofluorocarbons.
The Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) has adopted opinions and amendments to Annex VI to the CLP regulation, with 39 new entries added, 17 entries amended and 1 entry deleted. This amended Regulation shall enter into force on May 3, 2022, and will be implemented from November 23, 2023.
On 20 April 2022, the EU released the revised Prior Informed Consent (PIC Regulation) on the import and export of hazardous chemicals, which will start to apply from 1 July 2022. EU exporters will be required to notify their intentions to export 22 chemicals following an amendment to the PIC Regulation. The amendment also bans the export of four chemicals.
As one of the most frequently used alternative methods for hazard assessment, the read-across approach has been widely adopted in chemical registration in many counties and regions. Take new substance registration in China for example, read-across is widely used in serial registration. When carrying out serial registration, enterprises shall provide physicochemical data of each substance as well as a complete set of data that consists of health toxicological data and eco-toxicological data of new substances in the group. Besides, enterprises should submit at least one same health toxicological and ecotoxicological data for each new substance.