The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) are about to start working together in the area of chemicals safety. In line with the shared commitment to improve chemical safety, ECHA and the US EPA have signed a Statement of Intent to co-operate.
The aim is to strengthen the scientific dialogue between the EU and the US and to increase co-operation on technical matters and other issues of common interest including the hazards and emerging risks of chemical substances, risk management tools, scientific collaboration and information exchange.
One of the anticipated areas of collaboration will be on exchange of data and information. For example, the Statement of Intent will promote the exchange of public information on hazards, uses, and substance identification between ECHA and the EPA. Experience on the manner in which confidentiality claims are verified by the agencies will also be shared with the aim of maximising the information on chemicals available to the public both in the EU and the US, while giving due protection to industry’s confidential information. The agencies will also be sharing information on approaches to more efficiently address chemicals of concern.
In practice, the co-operation will take place between ECHA and the EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics and National Centre for Computational Toxicology.
When signing the statement Geert Dancet, Executive Director of ECHA said “this Statement of Intent will lead the way to a closer co-operation between both regulatory authorities to the benefit of companies and citizens on both sides of the North-Atlantic Ocean”.