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May 29, 2013

EC Posts Assessment of Consequences of Changing the REACH Requirements for Nanomaterials

Lynn L. Bergeson

In May 2013, the European Commission (EC) posted a January 2013 report entitled Examination and Assessment of Consequences for Industry, Consumers, Human Health and the Environment of Possible Options for Changing the REACH Requirements for Nanomaterials. According to the report, 12 of the 21 originally suggested options are considered already implemented with existing legislation and guidance. The other nine options were considered relevant for an adaptation of the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulation and thus build the basis for the assessment. The report states that the total costs for implementing the nine options range from €11 million to €73 million as a cumulative effort for all concerned companies for a time period until 2022. These costs result from extensive application of grouping and read-across approaches under REACH. Without this approach, the costs would multiply up to €100 million and €600 million.  The report states: “The overall conclusion of this impact assessment shows that additional costs for companies lead to a reduced uncertainty about potentially adverse effects of nanomaterials to human health and the environment. These may lead to considerable benefits, especially if combined with appropriate risk reduction measures.”