Monday March 12, 2018
State-of-REACH Gets Attention in ECHA Discussions
The European Chemicals Agency has been offering some broad information recently about the workings of the REACH regulations it oversees.
The most general involved a March 5 report by the European Commission coinciding with the 10th anniversary of the chemicals program. The document (bit.ly/2Fjqs5d) makes 15 recommendations on issues such as fees, help for small businesses, better enforcement, interaction with other EU regulations, supply chain tracking, and more.
ECHA responded (bit.ly/2FAUS2i) that it will address the concerns but also stressed that existing efforts already are addressing some, especially where companies are falling short.
In that vein, during the week prior to the release of the review, ECHA warned (bit.ly/2Fq8l9B) regulated industry about concerns over information on chemicals being provided. Its data included that 151 out of 222 registrations reviewed during 2017 had problems. These involved substances of potential concern.
As well, it said that the "vast majority" of 1,952 reviews since 2008 found missing data. Frequent faults were prenatal developmental toxicity, mutagenicity/genotoxicity, repro-toxicity, and aquatic toxicity.
The agency recommended attention to three areas to forestall such finding: keeping dossiers updated with new information, ensuring valid weight-of-evidence justifications, using robust groupings, and making strong read-across arguments.
Meanwhile, ECHA also announced updates to its Registry of Intentions (bit.ly/2FmQYGO). The point is to facilitate tracking of substances via a status field. The agency explained:
"[S]ubstance information is now presented in three lists based on regulatory process (CLH, identification as SVHC, restriction)...[T]he status information on CLH dossiers has been expanded to cover all the steps of the regulatory process, from submission of the intention to publication of the substance in the table of harmonised entries."