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America's Chemical Makers Dismayed by E.U. 'REACH' Vote
Friday November 18, 10:49 am ET

Regulatory Scheme Will Not Advance Public Health Goals

ARLINGTON, Va., Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Chemistry Council (ACC) is dismayed by yesterday's European Union Parliament vote to approve the Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH) proposal. Although the Parliament addressed some of the grave, global concerns with the European Commission's proposal, the revised REACH scheme would not provide the health and environmental benefits envisioned by consumers in Europe and around the world.

ACC welcomed the Parliament's amendments that would make the registration process more streamlined and workable. However, ACC is confounded over the Parliament's rejection of a risk-based, scientific approach to safe chemicals management. For example, the authorization section of REACH would require the substitution of some chemical products even if they are safe for use.

"If enacted, manufacturers and consumer product companies from Boston to Bombay that use essential chemical products would be impacted by this misguided scheme," stated ACC president and CEO Jack N. Gerard. "We will continue to advocate a common sense approach to managing chemicals that focuses on ensuring safety rather than substituting essential products."

ACC supports the objectives of REACH -- protecting human health and the environment and increasing confidence in the EU's chemical regulatory system - - but the approved REACH proposal remains unworkable, impractical and unsuited to provide anticipated health and environmental benefits. In addition, more than 30 governments in the World Trade Organization have raised concerns about the trade and competitive impacts of REACH.

The U.S. chemistry industry continues to invest heavily in the application of improved technologies to ensure the safe production and use of essential chemical products. ACC encourages European officials to focus on advancing innovation in chemical use and management rather than choosing winners and losers among chemical products.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people's lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care, common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues, and health and environmental research and product testing. The business of chemistry is a $520 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation's economy. It is one of the nation's largest exporters, accounting for ten cents out of every dollar in U.S. exports. Chemistry companies invest more in research and development than any other business sector. Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the nation's critical infrastructure.

Source: American Chemistry Council

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