Canada has presented a long-awaited proposal to impose strict restrictions on a range of long-chain PFASs and flame retardants, as well as bans on dechloranplus (DP) and decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE). According to a Canada Gazette notice, adopting the proposal – which the Canadian government floated in a 2018 consultation document – would position the country to ratify and implement amendments to the Stockholm Convention on persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and help it achieve other environmental goals.
The 'Prohibition of Certain Toxic Compounds Restrictions, 2022' would repeal and replace existing regulations prohibiting certain long-chain per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, as well as persistent flame retardants. Within three years, the amended restrictions are expected to make the manufacture, use, sale, and import of DP and DBDPE, as well as items containing them, illegal. They also want to go to the "next step" of risk management for the following chemicals by eliminating current exemptions:
However, there are certain exceptions due to sunset. They include manufactured items containing PFOA and LC-PFCAs, an exemption for PFOS in certain photolithography processes and photographic films, and several carve-outs that had allowed the continued sale of products containing the regulated substances manufactured before 2017. According to the Stockholm Convention, an exemption will be granted until the end of 2025 for the use of aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF) containing PFOA or LC-PFCAs in emergency situations, as well as for testing reasons, provided emissions are properly contained and disposed of.
If no viable alternative exists, companies can seek permission to continue using DP, DBDPE, or HBCD for up to three years. Interested parties have 75 days to submit comments and 60 days to submit a notice of complaint requesting the government to create a board of review.