18 March 2008 15:56 [Source: ICIS news]
BALTIMORE, Maryland (?xml:namespace>
The chemicals assessment and management programme (Champ) now being developed by US, Canadian and Mexican environmental regulators is a more workable solution than Reach, Stephen Johnson, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), told an industry conference.
Speaking at the annual GlobalChem conference on international chemicals regulation, Johnson said: “We believe that Champ is a more focused, productive and workable solution than Reach.”
Also known as the Montebello Agreement, Champ is a chemicals control plan established in a tripartite communique signed in August 2007 at Montebello, Quebec, by the US, Canada and Mexico.
Under the plan, the
In addition, the agreement provides that by 2020 the three countries will establish and maintain current information on chemical inventories held by each nation.
Although the Reach registration, evaluation and authorisation of chemicals programme envisages comprehensive environmental and health profile testing of more than 30,000 chemicals and substances, Johnson said the more targeted Champ approach would in the end provide information on more chemicals more promptly.
“Under this agreement, the
The Champ approach, he said, “will enable quicker, more efficient and more cost effective testing of more chemicals than Reach”.
Johnson indicated that EPA under the administration of President George Bush will work to migrate the Champ approach to other nations in an apparent effort to head off what many in US industry fear will be the international spread of Reach.
“We are encouraging other nations to cooperate with us in implementing Champ,” Johnson said, adding that “we must capture opportunities to work with our international partners” towards the international adoption of Champ.
Earlier, US chemical industry officials expressed concern that the Champ plan - widely welcomed by US producers as a more sensible alternative to Reach - might be in jeopardy if a new administration in
Johnson also announced a new EPA plan to broaden the existing high production volume (HPV) testing programme to include inorganic chemicals.
Co-sponsored by the Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association and the American Chemistry Council (ACC), the three-day GlobalChem conference continues through Wednesday.
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