On May 24, 2022, China State Council issued an Action Plan on New Pollutants Governance (“Plan”) to set out a regulatory roadmap to control new chemicals and outline an enhanced enforcement framework for compliance. The Plan establishes a framework, which will be developed by decrees and regulations to come, for an environmental risk management system for chemicals, and integration and expansion of China’s existing regulatory programs on chemicals. It also encourages local governments to implement a risk assessment system and promulgate local control plans, rules, and standards on the management of key chemicals to supplement the regulatory programs specified in the Plan.
Companies manufacturing chemicals, importing chemicals, using chemicals in their production, and any facility that releases or discharges the new pollutants, as well as companies manufacturing or importing toys, student supplies, and major consumer products, are likely to be directly and indirectly affected by this new roadmap.
New pollutants, according to the China Ministry of Ecology and Environment (“MEE”), refer to “toxic and hazardous chemicals with the characteristics of biological toxicity, environmental persistence, bioaccumulation, etc. which pose great risks to the ecological environment or human health, but have not been included in environmental management or existing management measures are not sufficient.” See the Transcript of MEE Monthly Press Conference in March 2022. The precise scope of new pollutants covered by this roadmap will be clarified in forthcoming lists.
JD Supra, 01-06-22