Article 68(2) of REACH provides a simplified procedure which the Commission may use in relation to substances classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic for reproduction (CMR), categories 1A and 1B on their own, in mixtures or in articles that could be used by consumers. The procedure differs from the standard restriction procedure of Articles 69 to 73, which requires the preparation of an Annex XV Dossier to initiate the restriction process, public consultation, opinions by RAC and SEAC and the consultation of Forum.
The Commission approach to the implementation of Art. 68(2) for articles was presented in a paper (421 kb) (Nov 2014) discussed with the Member States Competent Authorities and the stakeholders.
The Commission adopted a restriction (Dec 2013) following the procedure of Art. 68(2) for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in rubber and plastic.
The Commission has launched a public consultation on the potential restriction of CMRs 1A and 1B in textiles - deadline 22 January 2016.
REACH contains a safeguard clause (Article 129) which enables an EU country to take provisional measures (e.g. a restriction) where it has justifiable grounds for believing that urgent action is essential to protect human health or the environment in respect of a substance, on its own, in a mixture or in an article, even if satisfying the requirements of REACH. The following steps must be taken:
In the frame of the provisions on transitional measures concerning restrictions (Article 137 of REACH), two measures were adopted.
The first prohibits the placing on the market of acrylamide for grouting applications (Regulation [EU] No 366/2011). The second prohibits cadmium in jewellery, brazing fillers, and plastics (Regulation EU No 494/2011 with related Corrigendum OJ L 136/105).
The use of asbestos fibres and articles containing the fibres is prohibited by REACH regulations.
Specifically, six types of asbestos are listed: chrysotile, crocidolite, amosite, anthophyllite, tremolite, and actinolite.
EU countries may exempt the placing on the market and use of diaphragms containing chrysotile for existing electrolysis installations until they reach the end of their service life, or until suitable asbestos-free substitutes become available, whichever comes sooner.
If they do this, EU countries have to provide a report to the Commission by 1 June 2011 on:
EU countries may also allow the placing on the market of articles in their entirety containing asbestos fibres, which were already installed and/or in service before 1 January 2005, under specific conditions ensuring a high level of protection of human health.
In this case, EU countries had to communicate the national measures to the Commission by June 2011.
The Commission has made publicly available the information communicated by EU countries according to the reporting obligations described above.
Link to Report on Entry 6 of Annex XVII of REACH (2 MB) (compendium)
The Commission has requested that ECHA prepare a dossier in accordance with Article 69 of REACH with a view to prohibiting the placing on the market and use of diaphragms containing chrysotile.