Chemical law update: ECHA, ECJ, SVHCs and the CLH process

Category: compliance Industry: mobility, consumer goods Author: Year:
[Translate to English:] Philipp Reusch

The ECHA expands its information offerings

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) is updating and expanding its informational offerings in connection with the implementation of its 2021 work program (PDF only in German).

  • The ECHA has updated its guidance for Poison Centre Notifications (PCNs) pursuant to Annex VIII of the CLP Regulation (PDF) via the submission portal. The current Guidance (PDF) includes e.g. sector-specific solutions for fuel, petroleum and construction products.
  • Users of the IUCLID system will now be able to find extensive information on the YouTube channel which has been set up for this purpose. There, users will be able to find tutorials on how to use the program, as well as recordings of webinars and explanations of system updates. 

Webinars on other topics are still available at the familiar address.

Appeals dismissed by the ECJ

The ECJ heard two appeals at the start of the year dealing with chemicals law.

  • On 25 February 2021, the ECJ published its Judgment in Case No. C-389/19 P (Sweden vs. the Commission).  The case involved an Implementing Decision by the European Commission (PDF) granting authorization for the use of certain lead chromate pigments. This Decision was annulled by the Judgment in Case No. T-837/16 and the Commission's appeal has now been dismissed as well. The effects of the annulled Decision will be maintained until the Commission issues a new decision.
  • On 21 January 2021, the ECJ published its Judgment in Case No. C-471/18 P (Germany vs. Esso Raffinage). This case involved the "follow-up" to the dossier evaluation in accordance with Article 42 of the REACH Regulation. The court dismissed Germany's appeal of a Judgment in Case No. T-283/15 concerning the use of a statement of non-compliance from the ECHA. The court confirmed that, in accordance with Article 42(1) of the REACH Regulation (PDF), the ECHA has exclusive jurisdiction to decide, following the procedure set out in Article 51, whether an adaptation submitted by a registrant in response to an ECHA dossier evaluation decision complies with the requirements. The court also made clear that the national authorities are responsible for ensuring that such decisions by the ECHA are enforced and adhered to.

New substances of very high concern under discussion at the ECHA

Additional proposals for the identification of new substances of very high concern are currently under discussion. These substances include e.g. medium-chain chlorinated paraffins (which are used e.g. in adhesives and sealants, for textile processing and in dyes) and Glutaral (biocide), as well as Phenol and alkylation products (manufacture of chemicals, rubber and plastic products). The complete list can be viewed here; the deadline for submitting comments expires on 23 April 2021.

Developments relating to the CLP Regulation should also be tracked

The registry of classification and labelling (CLH) intentions until outcome is continually expanded and now includes 635 substances and entries. Interested parties can use this registry to track the progress of their proposed entries. Anyone with relevant information about the identity or hazard properties of a substance is encouraged to provide this information during the early stages of the process, or during the consultation at the latest.

[March 2021]