Download PDF
March 24, 2022

RAC Adopts Opinion on Harmonized Classification and Labeling for MWCNTs

Lynn L. Bergeson Carla N. Hutton

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced on March 22, 2022, that the Committee for Risk Assessment (RAC) recently adopted ten opinions on harmonized classification and labeling (CLH), including an opinion for multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT). According to the annex to ECHA’s announcement, MWCNTs possess properties that make them useful for industrial applications in new or enhanced materials and products (e.g., tensile strength, electrical and thermal conductivity). According to the annex, MWCNTs are used in antistatic and electro-paintable thermoplastics, anti-fouling coatings, batteries (Li-ion), textiles, structural composites (e.g., for windmill blades and high performance sporting goods), and possibly printed electronics (conductive inks) and conductive coatings for displays and touch screens. The annex notes that carbon nanotubes (CNT) are used in thin heat mats, gas- and biosensors, and high-durability epoxy-paints. The substances have no existing entry in Annex VI of the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) regulation. The annex states: “RAC agreed to Germany’s proposal to classify MWCNTs as substances that may cause cancer via inhalation (Carc. 1B; H350i) and cause damage to the lungs via inhalation (STOT RE 1; H372). RAC also agreed to add specific concentration limits of C >1 % for STOT RE 1 and 0.1 > C < 1 % for STOT RE 2.” ECHA will send the RAC opinions to the European Commission (EC) for its decision. Harmonized classifications are listed in CLP Annex VI and should be applied by all manufacturers, importers, or downstream users of listed substances and of mixtures containing such substances.