Cefic and its members continuously strive to better understand environmental and human health effects and ensure the safety of products and processes through Responsible Care. One of the main responsibilities of Cefic is to contribute to the safe use of chemical substances in compliance with global, EU and national rules.
The EU Regulation on the Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals entered into force in June 2007 and is widely regarded as the most advanced system worldwide to regulate the safe use of chemical substances. Cefic has been intensely engaged in the establishment of REACH and remains deeply involved in supporting an efficient and successful implementation. As a constructive partner in environmental and health issues, Cefic continues to advocate the need for a consistent and integrated approach and a solid scientific basis for policy making.
Meanwhile, the political pressure for tightening rules on nanomaterials is increasing – even though the European Commission and the chemical industry agree that nanomaterials are already covered by existing legislation and that no specifically tailored measures are necessary. Cefic and the European Commission are collaborating to ensure that, where necessary, REACH and other product-specific directives will adequately address nanomaterials safety.
Safe Use of Chemicals in the Value Chain
As well as abiding by existing legislation, Cefic is committed to improving its management of chemicals and chemical processes through the worldwide Responsible Care programme and a combination of voluntary initiatives and specific action programmes. In its publication "Chemicals Safety in the Value Chain - How the European chemical industry manages safe use of chemicals", Cefic describes what the industry has been doing and will continue to do in order to ensure its products are handled and used safely at every step. The chemical industry has a long and proven track record of ensuring the safe use and handling of its products up and down the value chain.
“This brochure aims to raise people’s awareness about the importance of chemical products in our daily lives. At the same time, it is about our daily commitment to ensure chemicals are used safely in our industry and throughout the supply chain. I believe this publication comes at the right time, with so many questions being raised about the safety of chemicals.” - Peter Smith, Cefic Executive Director in charge of Product Stewardship.
Through Research and workshops funded by its Long-range Research Intiative (LRI), Cefic is contributing to the development of new methods of integrated risk assessment and tools aimed at better understanding the concept of dose, exposure and risk. Also as part of its Long-range Research Initiative (LRI), Cefic supports research into animal welfare under its innovation strategy and organises an Animal Alternatives Issue Management Team (AIMT) that coordinates activities for the European chemical industry.
At the global level and through the Global Product Strategy, Cefic continuously endeavours to better understand emerging scientific issues and how these can translate into useful policy. GPS, a voluntary initiative of the chemical industry to advance chemicals management worldwide, is part of Cefic’s contribution to the UN Strategic Approach to Chemicals Management (SAICM).