Tuesday, December 21, 2010

ECHA Recommends 8 Substances of Very High Concern be Subject to Authorization

While most attention has been on meeting registration deadlines and dealing with the new classification and labeling scheme, the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has also been busy at work assessing substances of very high concern (SVHC).  Yesterday ECHA recommended the addition of 8 chemicals to the candidate list for inclusion in the authorization annex based on carcinogenicity and/or reproductive toxicity issues.
The eight substances are:
  • Diisobutyl phthalate – DIBP (toxic to reproduction). A substance used as plasticiser for nitrocellulose, polyacrylate and polyacetate dispersions;
  • Diarsenic trioxide – As203 (carcinogen). A substance used in the manufacture of glass with special properties and of zinc;
  • Diarsenic pentaoxide – As205 (carcinogen). A substance which could be used as a replacement for diarsenic trioxide, no known current uses in the EU;
  • Lead chromate (carcinogen and toxic to reproduction). A substance used as pigment and in the manufacture of pyrotechnics;
  • Lead sulfochromate yellow - C.I. Pigment Yellow 34 (carcinogen and toxic to reproduction). A pigment used to colour plastics and coatings;
  • Lead chromate molybdate sulphate red - C.I. Pigment Red 104 (carcinogen and toxic to reproduction). A pigment with similar uses as lead sulfochromate yellow;
  • Tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate – TCEP (toxic to reproduction). A substance used as a plasticiser and viscosity regulator with flame-retarding properties for coatings;
  • 2,4-Dinitrotoluene - 2,4-DNT (carcinogen). A substance mainly used in explosives and propellants for ammunition.
The European Commission makes the final decision on the inclusion of the substances in Annex XIV of the REACH Regulation.  This now makes 46 chemicals on the candidate list waiting for addition to Annex XIV, after which they would only be eligible for continued use if manufacturers or importers applied for authorization and could show a combination of controlled use and a plan for finding substitutes.  Any authorization would be limited both temporally and with restrictions in the specific uses allowed.

More on the ECHA recommendations and the authorization process can be found on the ECHA web site.

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