EU chemical agency gives first hazardous substance authorisation


The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has granted its first approval to use a substance of very high concern (SVHC). Rolls Royce applied to use the chemical bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), which can cause central nervous system damage and birth defects, for the bonding of fan blades in jet engines.

SVHCs have been defined by the ECHA as those that cause irreversible damage to human health or the environment. If a chemical is put on this list it is the first step towards having its use restricted under the EU’s registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals (Reach) regulations.

The ECHA came to the conclusion that Rolls Royce’s plans to control exposure to DEHP were adequate. The final decision by the European commission will be based on the ECHA’s recommendations, which will be revisited in seven years time.


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