Read the full article by Françoise Labrousse and Ursula Schliessner (JD Supra)

The REACH reform recently announced by the European Commission is expected to substantially change the current rules for REACH restrictions and authorizations.

The European Commission (‘Commission’) has recently provided an important update on the two key initiatives enshrined in the new Chemicals Sustainability Strategy (‘CSS’): the future revision of Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 on the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (‘REACH’) and the ongoing restriction on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (‘PFAS’).

REACH Revision

On May 4, 2021, the Commission published an Inception Impact Assessment on the planned revision of REACH. This Inception Impact Assessment is currently subject to public consultation until June 1, 2021. Among others (e.g., revision of the information requirements for registrations, simplifying communication in the supply chains, revision of the substance evaluation procedure, more border controls, and more power for the European Union to audit national enforcement), the Commission’s stated objectives for the REACH reform also include the following policy options for Titles VII (‘Authorization’) and VIII (‘Restrictions’) of REACH.

Reach Restrictions. The options include: (i) expanding the so-called ‘generic risk approach’ (i.e., assuming that the use of a substance constitutes a risk) to new hazard classes such as endocrine disruptors, PBT/vPvB substances, immunotoxicants, neurotoxicants, respiratory sensitizers, and substances that affect specific organs; and (ii) extending the ‘generic risk approach’ to products marketed for professional use (as opposed to only industrial and consumer use)…”