EU governments set to defy industry on Reach
EU governments look set to reject industry demands to water down the substance registration procedure in the Reach chemicals reform.Draft legislation circulated by the UK presidency is the first attempt to draw up a revised legal text since Reach was tabled by the European Commission almost two years ago (ED 29/10/05).
Led by trade association Cefic, and with significant support from the European parliament, the chemicals industry has been calling for a screening mechanism that would exempt from registration chemicals unlikely to prove harmful enough to need restrictions.
The UK draft does not take up the idea. On the other hand it does provide the first direct confirmation that the "one-substance one-registration" plan to reduce substance testing (Osor) is likely to be incorporated into the regulation.
The paper was presented to governments last month. The UK insists it is not a formal compromise proposal, but the document is written as a detailed legal text and covers all Reach's major elements: the regulation's scope, registration, evaluation and authorisation procedures, plus data sharing rules.
Officials have asked member states for comments by 1 September. The presidency will circulate a new text before talks resume at junior diplomatic level on 18 September.
Among key points in the UK document:
This threshold applies to entire product output rather than to individual product types.
Rules for articles where substance release not foreseen also tightened.
But there would be a mechanism allowing them to express disagreement over safety assessments.
There would be lighter registration requirements for substances in the 1-10 tonne volume band.
Reprinted with permission of Environment Daily