What is REACH?
The European Community regulation on chemicals was overhauled and replaced by the REACH regulation (EC 1907/2006), which entered into force on 1 June 2007. REACH, which stands for the R
uthorization and restriction of CH
emical substances, combines and complements several co-existing legal texts of the EC regulation on chemicals. The aim of this new regulation is to achieve a higher level of information on chemicals produced in or imported into the European Community. Furthermore, the risks connected to the use of chemicals will be reduced through the implementation of this regulation.
What changes does REACH bring?
REACH is based on the principle of responsibility being borne by the industry. The regulation is compulsory for manufacturers and importers, as well as for industrial and commercial users/converters. In accordance with the principle of the reversal of the burden of proof, REACH transfers responsibility for chemical safety to these parties. In future, they must prove that their products can be handled safely and that they neither cause damage to converters and consumers nor needlessly pollute the environment. This is no longer the task of national agencies.
Which are the consequences of REACH?
According to the REACH regulation, all substances produced or imported in a quantity of more than one ton per year must be registered with the new European CHemical Agency (ECHA) in Helsinki (except polymers). Therefore, extensive basic data on these substances’ identity, contamination risk, classification and handling must be provided in the form of a registration dossier. Rather then the product itself, the individual substances that make up the product must be registered, even if they only form part of the preparation or product. In accordance with the “No data, no market” principle, only registered chemical substances may be sold on the European market. Unregistered substances will become illegal.
The REACH process started with the pre-registration of the “phase-in” substances (1 June until 1 December 2008). The registration of high-volume, environmentally harmful and very hazardous substances must be implemented within three and a half years of the regulation’s entry into force; for all other substances, the registration period is from three and a half to 11 years.
Uponor and REACH
Uponor supports the basic principles of the new regulation, which is aimed at improving the management of chemicals and restoring society’s confidence in their use.
Uponor is a downstream user according to Article 3 no. 13 of the REACH regulation and is therefore not obliged to register its products/systems. Within the set time limits, downstream users must guarantee that they are using only registered substances.
Uponor’s suppliers have been requested to pre-register the listed substances / make the related preparations by the end of 2008. These suppliers have confirmed the pre-registration or the intention to register their products in order to guarantee the REACH-compliance of Uponor products/systems. On a regular basis, Uponor will monitor its suppliers’ fulfilment of their obligations under the Reach regulation regarding Uponor products/systems.
Based on the information provided by its suppliers, Uponor hereby declares that its products/systems comply with the requirements of the Reach regulation. Should substances mentioned in the list of substances of very high concern (SVHC, published by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) on October 28, 2008) be contained in Uponor’s final products in concentrations above 0.1 % (w/w), Uponor shall disclose said substances in its Safety Data Sheets.
For further information on your role and responsibilities related to the REACH regulation, please contact your national helpdesk. Contact details for national helpdesks can be found on the Echa website
The REACH regulation also contains regulations on Safety Data Sheets (SDSs). SDSs remain the key element in communications between supplier and customer regarding questions of security and applications, both for substances and preparations. We will therefore add extra information to our SDSs describing the exposure of humans and the environment (termed ‘exposure scenarios’) during the use of the substance/preparation. These scenarios should cover all of our customers’ applications.
We will keep you informed and publish updated information through this website.
If you have further questions or require more information, please contact us via email at reach(at)uponor.com
For further information on the new REACH regulation, please visit the European Chemical Agency (ECHA) website
REACH declaration of conformity