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WECF signs position paper pushing for third party participation in the REACH Authorisation process

To ensure to replace SVHC with their saver alternatives, third parties should be allowed access to the Authorisation process of REACH

03.04.2013 |WECF

REACH is supposed to restrict and discontinue the use of hazardous chemicals. Through the Authorisation and Restriction process of chemicals, this goal is established. Therefore, companies willing to use Substances of Very High Concern (SVHC) in their market products have to ask for permission. However, the granting of permission is still too lenient.

The Position Paper signed by WECF and many other NGOs states that the Commission, the Agency and Member States should adopt all possible measures to encourage third party participation in the authorisation process to avoid unnecessary use of SVHCs.

Although producers willing to use SVHCs have to investigate the possibility of substituting the chemical(s) with safer alternatives, often SVHCs are granted permission despite having safer alternatives. Often, this is due to a lack of information on the side of the Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) and the Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis (SEAC). Third party participation in the Authorisation process can close the knowledge gap and provide RAC and SEAC with as much information as needed to avoid the usage of SVHC which have safer alternatives.

The position paper also enumerates measures for third party inclusion. It highlights a lack of transparency in the current authorisation process, and also criticises the absence of clear guidelines for submitting information on safer alternatives for third parties. Further measures on how to encourage participation of third parties are also suggested, such as competitions and establishing helpdesks and calling for a wide dissemination of authorisation applications.

You can read the full position paper here.

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