ECHA Publishes Dossier on Plastics Additives

25.02.2019 -

In cooperation with the industrial supply chain, European chemicals agency ECHA has mapped a range of high-volume chemicals used as additives in plastics to aid in identifying substances of priority for further assessment under REACH.

On its website the agency provides information on technical functions of additives along with supplying producers’ data on substances manufactured or imported in volumes of more than 100 /t. Methodology for comparing the potential of additives released from plastic products is also covered.

The list includes substances used as antioxidants, antistatics, flame retardants, nucleating agents, plasticizers, pigments, heat stabilizers and UV/light stabilizer, along with the polymer types they are most often found in, plus the expected concentration ranges during use and information on hazard potential.
ECHA says the project launched in 2016 and carried out in cooperation with 21 industry sectors, including both additive manufacturers and downstream users, is designed to help all users determine safe usage for substances contained in plastics, thus “triggering a need for updating their registration dossiers.”

The information should be included in registrations and also communicated down the supply chains, the agency says, adding that comparing the release potential of additives with the same technical function can also help in the substitution of hazardous substances with safer alternatives.

The project contributes to meeting the 2020 goals of the World Summit on Sustainable Development and to the EU’s Strategy for Plastics in the Circular Economy, ECHA notes.