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European Parliament environment committee--reach vote.

THE EUROPEAN Union's (EU) plastics converter industry federation, the EUPC, has welcomed an amendment to the EU's REACH chemical control process that would--if finally approved-remove waste from the system's environmental health assessments.

Walter Claes, the EUPC's health, safety and environment director, said: "To apply reach blindly to recycling could have made recycling extremely difficult".

The amendment will now be presented to a European Parliament plenary session in November, where it is expected to receive approval, although it must also be accepted by the EU Council of Ministers to become law.

However, the committee vote was not all good news for the EUPC, with members rejecting an amendment which would have exempted "the supplier of preparations formulated in a recycling process" to supply REACH safety data assessments to their customers. The amendment, promoted by the EUPC had called for a "modified workable 'safety data sheet--recycling'" to be supplied "only where required or requested". This proposal, said an EP note, was to prevent "REACH (having) an unintended negative impact on plastics recycling". Mr Claes said: "We regret there was not support for it". That said, his organisation will continue pushing for improvements to REACH: "We never said we want to get rid of REACH. It's not a sensible position. But we need tools to survive REACH".

For the plastics industry as a whole, the environment committee's decisions were generally seen as toughening REACH rules. Its MEPs refused to allow really light-touch controls on chemicals produced only in small quantities of between 1-10 tonnes, for instance
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Author:Nuthall, Keith
Publication:International News
Date:Oct 1, 2005
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