The American Chemistry Council (ACC) says it is ‘dismayed’ by the recent European Union Parliament vote to approve the Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) proposal.
The EU regulatory framework for REACH was proposed on 29 October 2003 with the aim of improving the protection of human health and the environment through the better and earlier identification of the properties of chemical substances.
ACC said through a statement that although the Parliament addressed some of the grave, global concerns with the European Commission’s proposal, the revised REACH scheme would not provide the health and environmental benefits envisioned by consumers in Europe and around the world.
ACC welcomed the Parliament’s amendments that would make the registration process more streamlined and workable. However, ACC says it is ‘confounded’ over the Parliament’s rejection of a risk-based, scientific approach to safe chemicals management. The authorisation section of REACH would require the substitution of some chemical products even if they are safe for use.
“If enacted, manufacturers and consumer product companies from Boston to Bombay that use essential chemical products would be impacted by this misguided scheme,” stated ACC president and CEO Jack N. Gerard. “We will continue to advocate a common sense approach to managing chemicals that focuses on ensuring safety rather than substituting essential products.”
ACC says it supports the objectives of REACH – protecting human health and the environment and increasing confidence in the EU’s chemical regulatory system – but the approved REACH proposal remains ‘unworkable, impractical and unsuited to provide anticipated health and environmental benefits’.