Our chemicals management topic covers international and national measures concerned with the sound management of chemicals. It focuses on chemicals in their pure form or in mixtures, and covers aspects such as classification, registration, harmonized labeling and more.
Whilst chemicals bring significant advantages, the drawback in their use is that they have the potential to impact both people and the environment negatively because they may be carcinogenic, endocrine disruptive, toxic to reproduction or persistent to the environment.
In order to mitigate these effects and better protect human health and the environment, regulators across the world, through Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) and national policies, have developed regulatory measures and are continuously putting in place common principles and good practices for safe and ecologically sustainable chemicals management.
The following areas are covered under the topic of chemicals management:
- Notification, risk assessment and registration of chemicals in order to increase the information on toxicological and ecotoxicological properties of existing and new chemicals
- Control of industrial chemicals or hazardous substances
- Classification (as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic for reproduction, etc.), and labeling of chemicals in order to inform the user about the properties of the chemicals and to give advice for their safe use and disposal (UN Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS))
- Shared responsibilities in relation to the import of hazardous chemicals and an open exchange of information (Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade)
- Phasing out of the production and use, as well as the waste management of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) (Stockholm Convention on POPs);
- Observation, research and information exchange on the effects of human activities on the ozone layer and the adoption of measures against activities that are likely to have adverse effects on the ozone layer (Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer)
- Specific actions to control ozone-depleting substances (Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer)
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