HELSINKI, Finland (March 1, 2011)—Seven new chemicals could become substances of very high concern, the European Chemicals Agency has said, including a solvent used in the polyurethanes industry.
The agency said the substances all are carcinogenic and/or toxic for reproduction, and have potentially serious effects on human health.
The list includes 1-methyl-2-pyrrolidone, which has been used as a solvent in the polyurethanes industry. The other six substances are 2-ethoxyethyl acetate, strontium chromate, 1,2-benzenedicarboxylic acid, di-C7-11-branched and linear alkyl esters, hydrazine, 1,2,3-trichloropropane and 1,2-benzenedicarboxylic acid, di-C6-8-branched alkyl esters, C7-rich.
Five European countries, including Belgium, Denmark and France, have put forward proposals to identity the chemicals as have very high concern, known by the acronym SVHC. There is also a proposal to make an amendment to a substance on the list— cobalt dichloride—as being both carcinogenic and toxic for reproduction.
The ECHA said that anyone can comment on the proposals within the next 45 days, and that comments should focus primarily on “the hazard properties that qualify chemicals as SVCHs,” but that information on uses of and exposures to these substances, as well as safer alternatives would be welcomed.
There are currently 46 substances on the SVCH candidate list. Inclusion on the list imposes restrictions on suppliers of preparations containing the substance.