On 14 October 2020, the European Commission published its chemicals strategy for sustainability towards a toxic-free environment1 (the ‘strategy’) as part of the European Green Deal. The strategy highlights that chemicals are fundamental for society and a robust framework is needed to make Union legislation stronger and more coherent. It presents several actions to bring about a toxic-free environment and to protect people and the environment from hazardous chemicals.
In particular, the Commission is considering extending the ‘generic approach to risk management’, i.e. restricting certain substances in products for certain users while allowing limited exemptions under conditions clearly defined in law.
Until the proposed changes have been assessed and introduced in Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006) (REACH Regulation), the strategy aims to ‘prioritise carcinogenic, mutagenic and reprotoxic substances (CMRs), endocrine disruptors, persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic (PBT) and very persistent and very bioaccumulative (vPvB) substances, immunotoxicants, neurotoxicants, substances toxic to specific organs and respiratory sensitisers substances for (group) restrictions’ for all uses. To facilitate this action, the Commission has prepared a roadmap to prioritise these substances for (group) restrictions under REACH (the ‘Restrictions Roadmap’).