Chemical compliance… what’s happening?

What’s happening with regard to chemical regulations internationally? Here are some updates we’ve prepared for you for January 2021.

REACH dossier updates clarification

Under Article 22(1) of the REACH regulation, registrants have post registration obligations which include keeping their dossier updated. Until recently, it was stated that updates must be carried out “without undue delay”, which created ambiguity and differing interpretation of the deadlines for these updates.

The European Commission has now provided clarification on this phrase and implemented deadlines which are dependent on the type of information that has changed or requires updating. In most cases, a timeframe of 3 months has been applied for simple updates, which is extended to up to 12 months depending on the complexity of the update:

If multiple updates are required, the longest deadline is used for all updates to be included in the one submission. The new deadlines came into force from December 11th (60 days after the announcement on October 12th).

It is the responsibility of all co-registrants to ensure that the registration is up to date, emphasising the need for collaboration agreements and for companies to have a monitoring system in place to track changes that would trigger dossier update obligations.

If you need support with your REACH updates, please contact us.

REACH substances missing registration requirements

The Enforcement Forum of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has completed its seventh REACH enforcement project, revealing that 6.5% of all inspected substances were completely missing a valid registration.

Furthermore, 15% of the approximately 1,200 chemicals covered were found to be non-compliant with at least one registration duty. Over the course of the project, enforcement authorities from 28 countries within the European Economic Area also carefully checked if substances registered as intermediates met the proper definitions and were used under controlled conditions.

Incomplete registrations included those which had failed to update dossiers, use intermediates under controlled conditions or submit the proper tonnage information. Inspectors also checked whether registrations were completed in time.

The Enforcement Forum has made several suggestions for improvement based on the findings. More information can be found on ECHA’s website.

Companies should regularly check whether they are complying with all the obligations associated with registration and keep their dossiers up to date.

For support with your REACH dossiers, please contact us.

ECHA Committee proposes EU wide restrictions on microplastics

The Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis (SEAC) at the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has adopted its position on ECHA’s earlier proposal to impose massive restrictions on microplastics in Europe.

Just like the Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) before it, SEAC supports the proposal which would see microplastics banned in applications such as cosmetics, detergents and fertilizers. If implemented, the ban could stop 500,000 tonnes of microplastics from being released into the environment over the next 20 years.

“We need to protect our environment from microplastic pollution, and this restriction proposal is the most comprehensive of its kind in the world,” said Bjorn Hansen, Executive Director of ECHA.

“We have now concluded our scientific and technical assessment and given our recommendations on how to best address the risks. This will contribute to decision making in the European Commission and the aims of the EU’s Plastics Strategy.”

ECHA will now send its restriction proposal to the European Commission. Following the Commission’s decision, it will be voted on by member states in the REACH committee and debated by both the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament.

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