EP Extends Objection Window for TiO2 Classification

15.11.2019 -

The European Parliament’s Environment committee (ENVI) has reportedly extended by two months the window for objections to the classification of titanium dioxide in inhalable powder form as a category 2 suspected human carcinogen.

According to a letter seen by British trade journal Chemical Watch, ENVI chair Pascal Canfin has written to the relevant EU authorities informing them of the committee’s decision to extend the period of scrutiny from Dec. 4, 2019 to Feb. 4, 2020.

In a vote last week, the European Council, which represents EU member states, failed to reach a qualified majority to extend the deadline after Germany and the Czech Republic had voiced objections.

The classification was adopted by the European Commission in September.

In the run-up to Feb. 4, other EU countries, in particular Poland, are thought likely to come forward with objections, as a number were unhappy with the classification recommended by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), the EU body that administrates REACH.

While Lyon, France-based International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), part of the World Health Organization (WHO), has also concluded that the evidence supports the classification under REACH, the chemical industry, especially principal user the paints and coatings sector, generally opposes it.

Germany, the largest European market for TiO2 by far, has said it fears that the classification of TiO2 as a potential carcinogen in inhalable form could have repercussions for other powdered chemicals.