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Parliamentary questions
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26 August 2015
E-008875/2015(ASW)
Answer given by Mr Andriukaitis on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-008875/2015

The classification of formaldehyde was discussed by the Risk Assessment Committee (RAC) preparing ECHA Opinions. Their 2012 Opinion(1) was used by the Commission to update the classification of formaldehyde regarding its carcinogenicity Category CB (Commission Regulation (EU) No 605/2014 of 5 June 2014).

In addition, a mandate concerning the safety of the use of formaldehyde in nail hardeners was submitted by the Commission to the Scientific Committee for Consumer Safety (SCCS) and a final Opinion(2) adopted during its plenary meeting of 16 December 2014 following discussion under five meetings of its Working Group on Cosmetic Ingredients. Minutes of all meetings are available on the website(3). Risk for professionals who offer application of nail hardeners as part of their service and therefore may be more frequently exposed to formaldehyde has not been assessed in this Opinion.

As regards the protection of the health and safety of workers at work, formaldehyde has been discussed in the Scientific Committee on Occupational Exposure Limits for Chemical Agents (SCOEL) and in the Advisory Committee on Safety and Health at Work. SCOEL adopted a recommendation (SCOEL/SUM/125) regarding formaldehyde in 2008. Discussions on the appropriateness of proposing an OEL for formaldehyde have taken place within the Advisory Committee on Safety and Health at work (ACSH), via its Working Party on Chemicals. SCOEL was requested to review its Recommendation in a new mandate in April 2015. The issue was already discussed during its plenary meeting in June 2015.

(1)http://echa.europa.eu/opinions-of-the-committee-for-risk-assessment-on-proposals-for-harmonised-classification-and-labelling/-/substance-rev/2067/term
(2)http://ec.europa.eu/health/scientific_committees/consumer_safety/docs/sccs_o_164.pdf
(3)http://ec.europa.eu/health/scientific_committees/consumer_safety/minutes_wg_meetings/index_en.htm

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