The Health and Environment Ministry of Canada has proposed a recommendation to add organic substance used in paints and six flame retardants to the country's toxic substances’ list. The six flame retardants are part of a group of ten substances that the government assessed to determine whether they have any health or environmental risks.
These substances are to be added to Schedule 1 of the Act. The ministers also released a risk management scope document for these substances in initiating discussions with stakeholders on the development of risk management actions. Furthermore, this will allow the government to put restriction on the exposure of these chemicals.
Out of these ten, some of the six chemicals poses risk to the environment, while others enter the environment in a quantity or concentration that may cause danger to human health. These six chemicals are:
triphenyl phosphate (TPHP);
tert-butylphenyl diphenyl phosphate (BPDP);
bis(tert-butylphenyl) phenyl phosphate (BDMEPPP);
isodecyl diphenyl phosphate (IDDP);
isopropylated triphenyl phosphate (IPPP); and
The ministries said they are planning regulatory action to minimise wastewater releases of TPHP, BPDP, BDMEPPP, IDDP and IPPP. Also, the government will consider regulatory and non-regulatory measures to reduce dermal exposures of children to IPPP and TEP, which can be used in mattress covers and child seats. However, there is no additional action on the other four flame retardants that were evaluated in the assessment.
Companies submitted their comments on the draft screening assessment of the flame retardant group within 60 days from 6th November 2021. The final screening assessment and the proposed risk management approach is expected to come into force in November 2022.
As per section 74 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA), the Minister of the Environment and the Minister of Health have conducted a screening assessment of Lotus corniculatus extract. This substance was identified as a priority for assessment, as it met the categorization criteria under subsection 73(1) of CEPA. Lotus corniculatus is a plant that is also known by the common name ‘bird's-foot trefoil’.
The ecological risk of Lotus corniculatus extract was characterized using the ecological risk classification of organic substances (ERC), a risk-based approach that employs multiple metrics for both hazard and exposure, with weighted consideration of multiple lines of evidence for determining risk classification.
Considering all available lines of evidence presented in this screening assessment, there is a low risk of harm to the environment from Lotus corniculatus extract. It is concluded that Lotus corniculatus extract does not meet the criteria under paragraph 64(a) or (b) of CEPA, as it is not entering the environment in a quantity, concentration or under conditions that have or may have an immediate or long-term harmful effect on the environment or its biological diversity. Also, the quantity does or may not constitute danger to the environment on which life depends.
The general population of Canada may be exposed to Lotus corniculatus extract through the use of cosmetics, including body lotion and lip balm.
The Government of Canada is accepting comments on the draft screening assessment for 60 days, until 13th October.
On the 5th of August, the Government of Canada nominated long-chain PFCAs, their salts and related compounds (also known as precursors) for consideration under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). The Stockholm Convention is a multilateral treaty aimed at protecting human health and the environment by eliminating/restricting the global production and use of POP.s POPs are chemicals that:
remain intact in the environment for a long period of time
accumulate in living organisms
are harmful to humans and/or to the environment
have properties that cause them to travel long distances and become widely distributed throughout the environment
Although long-chain PFCAs, their salts and related compounds have previously undergone a Canadian ecological screening assessment, the report concluded that long-chain PFCAs, their salts and their precursors are entering the environment at levels that are harmful to the environment. The manufacture, use, sale, offer for sale or import of long-chain PFCAs, their salts and precursors and products that contain them have been prohibited since 2016, under the Prohibition of Certain Toxic Substances Regulations, 2012 , with a limited number of exemptions. However, these substances have not been evaluated in Canada from a human health perspective.
Human and animal toxicity data are not available for every long-chain PFCA, salt or related compound. However, considering that long-chain PFCAs have similar structures and substances with similar structures behave similarly in the body, all of these substances may be associated with similar health effects.
Furthermore, a growing number of jurisdictions, including the United States, Australia and the European Union, are developing action plans to address the PFAS class of chemicals, including long-chain PFCAs.
Canada’s health and environment ministries have urged the conditions on the use of phosphonic acid, P,P′-(1-hydroxydodecylidene)bis-, allowing the limited amounts of the anti-adhesive to be used in certain cosmetic products. Since the substance is toxic or capable of becoming toxic under the section 64 criteria of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA)
The ministerial conditions permit the informing entity to only use the substance to manufacture the following cosmetics at a concentration of 0.4% by weight or less:
leave-on hair styling products;
leave-on makeup; and
Importation is also allowed, if the substance is present in any of the three cosmetic product categories at a concentration of 0.4% by weight or less.
The Canadian government has finalised regulations to limit formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products and apply the country’s that generally align with that of US.
The regulation will concern the import, sale and offer for sale of the products for indoor use in Canada, with some exceptions. The government has set the following maximum formaldehyde emission levels:
0.05 parts per million (ppm) for hardwood plywood;
0.09ppm for particleboard;
0.11ppm for medium-density fibreboard;
0.13ppm for thin medium-density fibreboard; and
0.05ppm for laminated products.
Under the authority of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA), the rules also set recordkeeping, labelling and reporting requirements for the industry. The government has also finalised a directive on the testing of formaldehyde emissions to ensure consistent levels.
Formaldehyde can irritate the eyes, nose and throat and aggravate asthma symptoms, especially in children. At higher exposure levels, it has been associated with cancer of the nasal passageways as concluded by the Health Canada.
Most products imported or sold in Canada will have to meet the new requirements by January 2023, 18 months after their official publication date. Laminated products, however, have five years – until July 2026 – to comply with the emission limits, testing, and certification requirements.
Canada’s environment and health ministries have suggested including solvent violet 13 to the Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist, a move that would restrict the dye’s use in cosmetics placed in the country.
The two government agencies nominated to add the dye to Schedule 1 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA), that is, the country’s toxic substances list. To manage exposure risks, the government has recommended imposing potential bans or restrictions on the substance’s use in certain cosmetics through its addition to Health Canada’s Hotlist.
The government proposed this upon the findings of 2018 screening assessment which concluded that exposure to the substance can increase one’s risk of cancer and lead to toxic effects in the kidneys, liver, spleen or bones. The colourant was one of seven anthraquinone substances assessed.
The government said solvent violet 13 are not only used in cosmetics but also in candles, pet shampoos, and food packaging. However, no other exposure routes were identified as sources of concern beyond cosmetics.
Interested parties may submit comments on the proposed risk management action and any other related information until 15 September.
The ministries said the other six substances do not meet the criteria set out in section 64 of CEPA to justify a toxic substance listing. As a result, the government proposed taking no further regulatory action on:
pigment blue 60;
solvent violet 59;
solvent blue 36;
disperse red 60;
acid blue 239; and
9,10-anthracenedione, 1,4-diamino-, N,N′-mixed 2-ethylhexyl and me and pentyl derivs.
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) has suggested federal environmental quality guidelines (FEQGs) for aluminum, selenium, and octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4). For this, a draft has been set out for the threshold levels acceptable in the environment for these substances.
FEQGs have laid down concentration levels for these chemicals below which the government assumes that there is a low likelihood of adverse effects on aquatic life or animals in the food chain.
The use of these set guidelines is voluntary unless they are integrated into other regulations. However, they can be used in environmental monitoring, risk management as well as performance measures of these chemicals.
The ECCC has suggested an equation to calculate a site-specific FEQG for aluminum, based on a fresh water body’s level of dissolved oxygen, pH, and water hardness. For selenium, the department has set separate guideline values for fish egg ovary tissue (14.7µg/g), fish whole body tissue (6.7µg/g) and bird eggs (11µg/g).
Suggested target for D4 in water is 0.2µg/L.
Comments would be accepted on the proposed threshold by August 11.
Global Product Compliance (GPC) specializes in Global Regulatory Compliance Solutions across sectors
globally. SSS Europe, a familiar name in chemical regulatory and compliance services now formally belongs
under the umbrella of GPC Holding Sweden.
Since 2008, we have emerged as one of the leading names among Global Regulatory Compliance Service
Providers with Representation services in Europe, Asia and Middle East for respective chemical