ECHA: Five European states call for evidence on broad PFAS restriction
The national authorities of Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Denmark invite interested parties to send in evidence and information on the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) by 31 July 2020.
The authorities of the five countries have agreed to prepare a joint REACH restriction proposal to limit the risks to the environment and human health from the manufacture and use of a wide range of PFAS.
The call for evidence is open until the end of July 2020. Companies producing or using PFAS, selling mixtures or products containing these substances and those using alternatives to PFAS are especially invited to take part. Scientists and NGOs are also encouraged to participate. The information received through the call for evidence will be used by the five countries to refine the scope of the proposal and analyse the effectiveness and socio-economic impact of different restriction options.
The national authorities will prepare the restriction proposal (Annex XV dossier) over the coming two years. Once the proposal is submitted, it will move to ECHA’s scientific committees for opinion making. Decisions on REACH restrictions are made in the European Commission by the EU Member States and scrutinised by the European Parliament and Council. The possible date of entry into force of this restriction is expected in 2025.
PFAS, a group of more than 4 700 chemicals, are known to be highly persistent in the environment and have been frequently observed to contaminate groundwater, surface water and soil. If releases continue, they will keep accumulating in the environment, drinking water and food. Certain PFAS are also known to accumulate in humans causing serious health effects such as cancer and liver damage.