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Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH)

European Union REACH Brown Bag


DTSC hosted a brown bag presentation on the newly adopted European Union REACH requlations on Wednesday, January 31. Links to the speakers' presentations are provided below.

Mr. Todd O. Maiden from Reed Smith and Dr. David Eastmond from the University of California Riverside were the invited presenters. 


Special Seminar

In January 2007, DTSC and OEHHA invited Dr. Richard A. Denison to discuss his study's findings that compared the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA) and REACH.  Since that seminar, Environmental Defense, in cooperation with Pollution Probe in Canada, released their completed study entitled Not That Innocent: A Comparative Analysis of Canadian, European Union and United States Policies on Industrial Chemicals.  This study compares the European Union's new REACH regulation with industrial chemicals policies in the U.S. and Canada.  The study also: 
  • offers a blueprint for addressing both long-standing deficiencies and newly emerging concerns over how government manages the potential risks of industrial chemicals,
  • identifies “best practices” from these three policies that most effectively ensure protection of human health and the environment, and
  • describes a paradigm shift occurring in the European Union, U.S., and Canada toward knowledge-driven policies where the burden-of-proof is placed more on those who stand to profit financially from the production and use of chemicals.
Environmental Defense report cover

A link to the updated presentation and report are provided below.


What is REACH?

The European Commission proposed a European Union regulatory framework for the Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (REACH) on October 29, 2003 (COM(03) 644 (01)).  REACH will require manufacturers and importers to gather information on the properties of their substances and register the information in a central database.  The European Union will establish European Chemicals Agency to manage the databases needed to implement REACH, to coordinate the evaluation of chemicals of concern, and to create a public database in which consumers and professionals can find hazard information.  The European Parliament and Council of the European Union formally adopted the proposal on December 18, 2006.  REACH will enter into force on June 1, 2007 and the European Chemicals Agency will be operational 12 months later.

European Commission REACH web sites:

Directorate-General for the Environment:  Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (REACH)

Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry:  The New EU Chemicals Legislation – REACH

Secretariat-General of the European Commission:  Monitoring the decision-making process in the Council and the Parliament


Other Links

Government of Canada:  Chemical Substances in Canada      

California Green Chemistry Initiative 

CEFIC (European Chemical Industry Council):  EU Chemicals Policy Review (REACH)

DTSC:   Green Chemistry Resources
             Preventing Pollution
             Electronic Hazardous Waste (E-waste)
             Restriction on Certain Hazardous Substances (RoHS)

Environmental Defense:   

Toxic Chemicals 
Not That Innocent 
High Hopes, Low Marks: A Final Report Card on the High Production Volume Chemical Challenge 

Investor Environmental Health Network:  Fiduciary Guide to Toxic Chemical Risk 

European Chemicals Bureau:  Information on the interim strategy

Greenpeace European Unit:  REACH – EU Chemicals Policy Reform

Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD):  eChemportal The Global Portal to Information on Chemical Substances 

U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform:  The Chemical Industry, the Bush Administration, and European Efforts to Regulate Chemicals

World Wildlife Fund (WWF):  What is REACH?

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