The European Association for the Co-ordination of Consumer Representation in Standardisation (ANEC) recently published a position paper highlighting ‘the need for enhanced EU Regulations’ on chemicals. As part of this the NGO called for ‘specific provisions for nanomaterials to be implemented’.
In the paper ANEC provides its overview of the current regulatory landscape as it applies to nanotechnologies. So as to address what it feels are shortcomings, ANEC proposes that:
- ‘REACH [Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & Restriction of Chemicals Regulation] shall be revised in line with proposals from NGOs and some Member States […] to adequately cover nanomaterials. This shall include inter alia a definition of nanomaterials, lowered tonnage thresholds, a provisions to ensure that nanomaterials generally are considered as new substances to be registered independently of any corresponding bulk substances […]
- All existing relevant product legislation shall be reviewed with a view to incorporating nano specific requirements. In any new product legislation such requirements shall be included from the onset
- A compulsory nano register shall be implemented at the EU level following (in principle) the schemes which were adopted at the national level (France, Belgium, Denmark)’
- Nanomaterials coming into contact with drinking water be specifically assessed and approved
- A ban on using nanomaterials in toys and packaging ‘unless endorsed by a scientific committee’
In general ANEC feels that ‘the present specific European regulatory provisions for chemicals in (consumer) products […] are insufficient’ and that ‘REACH does not, and will not, compensate for these deficits’. It considers that ‘a systematic approach to address chemicals in products relevant for consumers needs to be developed’, and it should ‘cover overarching principles and basic strategies for all kinds of products, identify priorities, elaborate on product specific requirements including information provision as well as monitoring and market surveillance’.
Follow this link to read the entire position paper.