Glycol Ethers Regulations
The glycol ether producers in Europe are working together in a consortium to address the REACH registration requirement for certain members of the glycol ethers family. For further information please see the Consortia page and for more details please contact the Consortium Manager.
The Derived No Effect Levels (DNEL) and Predicted No Effect Concentrations (PNEC) for certain members were developed in the course of the registration under REACH for each member of the glycol ether family based on the available human hazard and environmental effect data. The values for the each glycol ether can be found here in the published data of the registration dossiers.
The European Solvents Industry Group (ESIG) has developed an approach of generic exposure scenarios (GES) for solvents that the consortium has used for the glycol ether family. Solvents are clustered by hazard and volatility; the uses of solvents are clustered by a combination of their hazard profile and key physico-chemical properties i.e. different use combinations that represent similar risks and are controlled using similar risk management approaches
EU Regulation 1272/2008 on Classification, Labelling and Packaging of substances and mixtures.
EU Directive 80/1107/EEC on “Protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to chemical, physical and biological agents at work”.
EU Directive 89/391/EEC on “Measures to encourage improvements in the safety and health of workers at work” and their respective daughter directives.
EU Directive 91/322/EEC on “Indicative limit values”
EU Directive 98/24/EC on “Protection of the health and safety of workers from the risks related to chemical agents at work”.
Complementary to REACH is the other key new EU regulation 1272/2008 on the Classification, Labelling and Packaging of substances and mixtures (known as CLP). The CLP regulations implement in the EU the international criteria agreed by the United Nation Economic and Social Council (UN ECOSOC) for the classification and labelling of hazardous substances and mixtures, more commonly known as the Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). CLP replaces and repeals the existing directives on classification and labelling of dangerous substances and preparations. The legislative instruments now replaced with REACH and CLP are shown below:
CLP also harmonises the rules for the classification and labelling of substances for supply and transport. Both the REACH and CLP regulations are now in force but both have a long transition process such that REACH will not be fully implemented until 2018 (registration date for phase in substances manufactured or imported in the range 1-10tpa) and CLP until 2017 (end of the period for mixtures labelled under the old directives to clear supply chains).
There are other EU laws that impact on glycol ethers, the EU Directives 80/1107/EEC, on “protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to chemical, physical and biological agents at work” and 89/391/EEC, on “Measures to encourage improvements in the safety and health of workers at work”, and their respective daughter directives. In particular, 91/322/EEC on “indicative limit values” and 98/24/EC on “the protection of the health and safety of workers from the risks related to chemical agents at work” oblige employers to assess the risks at the workplace and to take the risk reduction measures where appropriate. In addition, they require observation of the legal exposure limits. Indicative exposure limits do not have direct action in law but national authorities are obliged to take them into account when setting national limits.