According to survey taken by Chemical Watch, leading manufacturers in the chemicals industry neglect regular updates of REACH documents and instead devote their resources to the registration of new substances, which must be completed by May 2018.
Chemical Watch asked nine corporate groups, among them BASF, Bayer, AkzoNobel, Evonik, and Lanxess, about their priorities in terms of updates and new registrations. For example, BASF has submitted about 2,000 updates. This figure can be compared to 1,500 new registrations, and more are on the way. Lanxess plans 600 new registrations, Evonik about 800, Bayer 400, and AkzoNobel 339.
Of course, all companies stated that they provide automatic notifications of important changes to substance information. Nevertheless, Volker Soballa, director of product stewardship at Evonik, admits that not all documents are updated regularly. Doing so would tie up too many resources and not improve the safety of people or the environment. Given that the registration period expires in May 2018, new registrations of substances have a higher priority, says Soballa. He also states that about 40% of the documents are updated and that a plan to update the rest will be developed after May 2018.
According to Article 22 of REACH, registrants must take the initiative to update their own registrations promptly based on pertinent new information and transmit the update to the agency.
The ECHA criticized the companies for a lack of cooperation, but the company managers countered the accusation of the ECHA by placing responsibility for the situation on the complex completeness check and the various data and format requirements of IUCLID.
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