CEN and CENELEC consider very important to address the risks on the environment and health, in particular in relation to children, linked to the use of hazardous substances, and including chemicals in products. This is in line with the 7th Environment Action Programme (EAP) that is guiding European environment policy until 2020 and beyond. The EAP states that the development of the non-toxic material cycles and the development of sustainable substitutes should be supported by long-term actions with the aim of reaching the objective of a non-toxic environment.
The most recent action of CEN and CENELEC related to this objective is the development of a proposal for an EU standardization roadmap on measurement and declaration of regulated substances. The objective of the roadmap is to complement and support the legislation related to substances of high concern in products in a consistent way. The standards to be developed will provide help for a better communication within the supply chain, analyzing and characterizing methods to determine the substances in the products, and will help to identify the key trade-offs when it comes to the transition from product to waste and waste to product.
CEN also launched a project in January 2015 supported by the European Commission addressing hazardous chemicals in product standards. Technical Committees are most of the time not aware of the need to consider hazardous chemicals and often lack the expertise to be able to draft specific provisions. The objective of the project is to provide tailored support to Technical Committees for including such provisions in standards in order to ensure that product standards in the market comply with chemicals legislation and contribute to minimizing the health and environmental impacts of chemicals in products. The project will be completed in mid-2017.