24 June 1996 00:00 [Source: ICB]
A new scheme to improve international sharing of information on chemical risks was announced last week.
Concise documents detailing the risks of individual chemicals are being drawn up under the World Health Organisation's international programme on chemical safety (IPCS). Organisers hope they will reduce the duplication of risk assessment work by national authorities.
The publications will be known as Cicads - concise international chemical assessment documents - and will include toxicology information and examples of exposure scenarios. A first set of documents on 15 chemicals will be published by the end of the year.
At a meeting in Brussels, Belgium, last week, IPCS associate director Peter Toft explained: 'Countries are constantly facing budget cuts (for risk assessment work) and the IPCS is subject to budgetary constraints, so we are looking at improved ways of doing the basis of risk assessment.
'Countries tend to be unwilling to use each other's documents because of a lack of confidence in their quality.' Australia had already said it would use Cicads rather than national documents, Toft added.
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