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Who are ECHA?

ECHA are the European Chemical Agency. They are becoming a world leading authority on the safe use of chemicals. They are the driving force behind the implementation of the EU’s chemical legislation for the benefit of human health and the environment.

CLP Regulation

The Classification, Labelling and Packaging Regulation (CLP) introduces better and clearer classification and labelling of chemicals, that will be constant throughout the world. Consumers and users will know the effects of chemicals and the knowledge to use them safely. Transportation and supply will be consistent world-wide as well. This regulation aims to keep human health and the environment safe from harmful chemicals by harmonising the classification and labelling of chemicals, so that everyone in the industry and those beyond are informed of the safe use of potentially dangerous chemicals. The responsibility of classifying the chemicals lies within the industry, so the companies themselves have to register them.

What is REACH?

Chemicals are essential for everyday life- they are used in everything from clothes to cleaning products, but can be potentially hazardous and detrimental to our well being. REACH stands for ‘Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals’. It is the regulation that is helping to ensure that we share information about the chemicals used in products so dangerous substances are controlled and regulated. The REACH regulation means that companies are responsible for providing the information that they have on the chemicals that they use, including hazards risks and safe practice. Companies register this information on the ECHA website for free.  ECHA can help companies to comply with the legislation, and advance the safe use of chemicals, address chemicals of concern and provide information on chemicals. Through this, REACH also stimulates the development of safer chemicals by reducing the ease of use of more hazardous chemicals.

The Public Classification and Labelling Inventory

Through the REACH regulations, ECHA has had more than five thousand registrations of common and hazardous chemicals. The recently released Public Classification and Labelling Inventory makes these registrations of chemicals and how companies have classified their chemicals available to the public. This means that European consumers can now question whether certain chemicals are included in the goods that they buy. The inventory also reveals the differences between the classifications by different companies of the same chemicals. This highlights the need for more transparency and communication between suppliers and manufacturers, and even for legally binding uniform classification and labelling of substances.

Deadlines

The next REACH deadline is for May 2013, and it is expected that more chemicals will need to be registered than the 2010 deadline. A complicated process that may take some time, most companies that deal with chemicals employ a REACH compliance service to help them with data analysis, risk assessment and the registration to ECHA of the chemicals that they use or manufacture. Bibra - REACH Regulations is a great service that offers the best in expert help in all chemical matters.


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