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Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) Regulation

To gain market access into the European Union, there are legislation that restrict the use of potentially dangerous substances in products.  The two most common ones are RoHS (2011/65/EU) and REACH (EC 1907/2006).  RoHS, which standards for Restriction of Hazardous Substance, is a Directive while REACH, which standards for Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals, is a Regulation.  A Directive “sets out a goal that all EU countries much achieve, however, it is up to the individual countries to devise their own laws on how to reach these goals” (European Union, 2020).  A Regulation is a “binding legislative act” and “must be applied in its entirety across the EU (European Union, 2020).

As a regulation of the European Union (EU), REACH’s goal is to improve and protect the environment, animals and human health from the risks that can be posed by chemicals.  This regulation is far-reaching and applies to many products that maybe used by consumers.  For example, paints, electronics, cleaning products and furniture may all uses chemicals, therefore, companies that manufacture these products would have to be aware of REACH.

This regulation, which entered into force on June 1, 2007, is divided into four parts:

  1. Registration:
    Companies are responsible for collecting information on the properties and uses of the substances they manufacture or import above one ton a year. They also have to assess the hazards and potential risks presented by the substance. (ECHA Registration, 2021)
  1. Evaluation
    ECHA (European Chemical Agency) and the EU Member States evaluate the information submitted by companies to examine the quality of the registration dossiers and the testing proposals and to clarify if a given substance constitutes a risk to human health or the environment. (ECHA Evaluation, 2021)
  1. Authorization
    The authorisation process aims to ensure that substances of very high concern (SVHCs) are progressively replaced by less dangerous substances or technologies where technically and economically feasible alternatives are available. (ECHA Authorisation, 2021)
  1. Restriction
    Restrictions are an instrument to protect human health and the environment from unacceptable risks posed by chemicals. Restrictions are normally used to limit or ban the manufacture, placing on the market (including imports) or use of a substance, but can impose any relevant condition, such as requiring technical measures or specific labels. (ECHA Restriction, 2021)

For fuse manufacturers that place their products on the EU Market, they must adhere to the rules of REACH and comply with the requirements.   To obtain more information on REACH compliant products from this NEMA Group members, visit the specific manufacturer site as shown below:

https://www.eaton.com
https://www.littelfuse.com
https://ep-us.mersen.com

For more information on REACH, visit https://ec.europa.eu/environment/chemicals/reach/reach_en.htm

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