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Chemicals Management Plan Progress Report

(PDF Format - 942 KB)

Table of Contents

About this report

This is the first issue of the Chemicals Management Plan Progress Report. It has been created to keep stakeholders and other interested parties up to date on the activities and programs related to Canada’s Chemicals Management Plan (CMP). It will report on advances in major initiatives and highlight key activities related to the Government of Canada’s recent work under the CMP. It will also inform you about coming events, dates of interest and how to get involved.

The report is produced jointly by Environment Canada and Health Canada and will be published twice a year.

For more detailed information about the CMP, please visit the Chemical Substances website.

We encourage you to share this report with anyone who may be interested. We also welcome your feedback or suggestions. We can be reached at Substances@ec.gc.ca.




About the Chemicals Management Plan

The CMP is a comprehensive Government of Canada initiative aimed at reducing the risks posed by chemical substances to Canadians and their environment. The plan includes measures to assess and manage new and existing substances, and integrate government activities involving different laws governing chemicals, provide government accountability and support industry’s role in proactively identifying and safely managing the chemicals they produce and use.

Since it was launched in 2006, the CMP has made significant progress. Of the 4,300 substances identified as priorities for assessment by 2020, approximately 1,100 have been addressed and risk management action initiated (when necessary)through such initiatives as the Challenge to Industry, the Petroleum Stream Sector Approach and the rapid screening of substances of low concern. In addition, approximately 1,500 additional substances are on track to be addressed, with risk management initiated by 2016.

The Challenge to Industry Initiatives: Nearing completion

Launched on December 8, 2006 as one of the CMP’s first activities, The Challenge is nearing completion. Of the 194 substances up for assessment, work has been completed on 188 of them, with 42 substances found to be harmful to human health and/or the environment. For these 42 substances, risk management instruments have been finalized for 32 of them, with proposed instruments published for six and in development for the remaining four.

Risk management instruments include codes of practice, guidelines, pollution prevention plans, significant new activity orders, environmental performance agreements and regulations developed under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. Other instruments under the Canadian Consumer Product Safety Act and the Food and Drugs Act such as an addition to the Cosmetic Hotlist were developed.

Substances have been evaluated in 12 batches, and when substances have been proposed or concluded to be harmful they are accompanied by risk management scope and approach documents that propose risk management instruments. These documents are part of the overall consultation process which continues through the development of draft and final risk management instruments.

Assessments need to be finalized for six substances in Batch 12. For four of these substances, draft assessments were released in the summer of 2013; these will be finalized in 2014. Draft assessments for the remaining two substances will be published in 2014. Draft and final assessment reports will be accompanied by risk management scope or approach documents, as required.

The Substance Groupings Initiative: Draft assessments published for 175 substances

The CMP’s Substance Groupings initiative has made significant progress since 2011, with the completion of data collection for the nine substance groupings, including the use of survey notices issued under section 71 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (mandatory surveys). Information was also gathered using other mechanisms, including the use of voluntary and sector-based approaches, agreements with government departments and industry consortia in other jurisdictions.

The first draft assessments and associated risk management scopes, as required, covering approximately 175 aromatic azo and benzidine-based substances were recently completed. Work is proceeding, with more draft assessments and any required risk management scope documents planned for publication in 2014. Determination of needs for additional information-gathering if required to inform risk management actions is also being considered. Final assessments for all substances, along with any applicable risk management approaches, are expected to be published by the end of 2016. For more information, see table - Substance Groupings Initiative: Status at a glance.

Substance Groupings Initiative: Status at a glance
Substance groupingNumber of substances for which information was collected under section 71Publication of draft assessment and risk management scope documents as required
Aromatic azo and benzidine-based substances223Table note[a]June 2013-May 2014
Substituted diphenylamines13Spring 2014
Cobalt-containing substances14Spring 2014
MDI/MDAs8Early 2014
Internationally classified substances1Table note[b]Early 2014
Selenium-containing substances23Fall 2014
Certain organic flame retardants10Early 2015
Boron-containing substancesn/aEarly 2015
Phthalates32Spring 2015
Table note a

This category was divided into 16 subgroups. Draft screening assessments were published in 2013 for 9 of the 16 subgroups.

Return to table note [a]referrer

Table note b

Voluntary information-gathering and previous surveys are being used to inform risk assessment of these and the remaining substances in this grouping.

Return to table note [b]referrer

Petroleum Sector Stream Approach: Final screening assessment reports being published

In 2013, four final screening assessment reports and three draft assessment reports under the CMP’s Petroleum Sector Stream Approach were published, bringing the total of final reports under the initiative to seven. For the substances that were considered harmful, a risk management scope or approach document was published to provide stakeholders with an opportunity to comment on proposed risk management measures that the Government of Canada intends to develop.

Work for the remaining substances under the Petroleum Sector Stream Approach is ongoing, with draft screening assessment reports for several groups of substances in Stream 4, and one group of substances in Stream 0, expected to be published in 2014. The initiative is on target to publish final screening assessment reports for all of the approximately 160 substances in this initiative by the summer of 2017. ? For more information, see table - Petroleum Sector Stream Approach: Status at a glance.

PSSA Substances "Stream"

Diagram of PSSA Substances "Stream" (See long description below)

Long description of the PSSA Substances "Stream" diagram

This diagram is a flow chart. The chart begins with a box containing the text “Approximately 160 substances”. An arrow from this box leads to another with the question “Manufactured or imported by the petroleum sector?” If the answer is no, an arrow leads to a box which reads “Stream 0 : 7 substances not relevant to the petroleum sector (coal tar substances)”. If the answer is yes, there is an arrow leading from this box to the next, which contains the question “are they leaving the factory?” If the answer is “no,” the arrow leads to a box which reads “Stream 1: 68 site-restricted petroleum substances. If the is answer “yes”, there is an arrow pointing to two boxes. The first box reads “Industrial use only (e.g. feedstock, fuels, lubricants, etc.) and has a line connecting it to a box which reads: “Stream 2: 16 industry restricted petroleum substances.” The second box under contains text which reads “final products used by the public or other sectors.” It then has lines pointing to two additional boxes. One is marked “Stream 3: 13 fuels,” the second is marked “Stream 4: 67 petroleum substances that may be present in consumer products”.

Petroleum Sector Stream Approach: Status at a glance
Stream No.Number of substancesNumber harmful so farTable note[a]Screening assessment report published
DraftFinal
0: Coal tars700/10/1
1: Site-restricted68404/44/4
2: Industry-restricted1644/53/5
3: Fuels1313/50/5
4: May be found in consumer products6700/100/10
Table note a

This column includes substances either proposed or concluded to be harmful; not all the substances in the column have been concluded to be harmful.

Return to table note [a]referrer

In-Commerce List: Revised list clears way for prioritization

A revised In-Commerce List was published for a 90-day correction and review period that closed on July 31, 2013. The revised list of approximately 3,400 substances may grow as a result of nominations received during this period. Watch for an updated version of the list to be re-published in early 2014.

The goal of this update is the creation of a revised In-Commerce List of substances with verified chemical identities. Items on the list will then be prioritized according to the likelihood of their presenting significant harm to human health or the environment, so that those substances requiring further consideration or risk assessment can receive attention.

The prioritization exercise, expected to be completed by 2016, has already begun. The general principles and approaches for prioritization were developed during stakeholder engagement between 2007 and 2011. These include considerations of substance type, quantity and use pattern, and property and toxicological information. Evaluation will follow of substances that require further assessment in order to identify potential risks to human health and the environment.

Stakeholder Engagement: Highlights to date in 2013

The CMP Stakeholder Advisory Council meets regularly to discuss issues of interest. In 2013, meetings were held in May and November, with topics including coming amendments to the environmental emergencies regulations, monitoring and surveillance in Aboriginal communities as well as nationally representative biomonitoring results for Canadians and how the CMP uses information obtained through biomonitoring and environmental monitoring.

Meeting summaries, membership and other information about the Stakeholder Advisory Council, can be found on the Chemical Substances website.

Regular stakeholder information sessions and consultations are held on specific topics throughout the year. Since April 1, 2013, a variety of activities have been organized to reach stakeholders and share information. Twelve web-based information sessions were broadcast across Canada, reaching over 1,500 people for notices issued under section 71 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 for the following initiatives:

  • Triclosan
  • Certain Organic Flame Retardants Substance Grouping
  • Domestic Substances List Inventory Update (DSL IU) Phase 2
  • Selenium-containing Substance Grouping
  • Phthalate Substance Grouping

The objective of these online information sessions is to inform stakeholders about the section 71 notice for the initiative, including who must respond to clarify reporting requirements, as well as the timelines for responding. For most of these initiatives, there were also information sessions related to the online reporting system to assist stakeholders in submitting their information.

Stakeholder engagement opportunities on the horizon

The public can contribute to government decisions by providing comments on draft documents. Since April 1, 2013, the government has published for comment 14 draft screening assessment reports. It has also published various risk management documents. You can still contribute comments on the following in process or coming publications (see Publications to watch for in the next six months).

Documents Out for Consultation
Document in progressClosing date
Azo ‘package 2’ Draft Screening Assessmentsand Risk Management Scope for:
Azo disperse dyes
Azo solvent dyes
Monoazo pigments
January 1, 2014
Notice of intent to amend the Domestic Substances List under subsection 87(3) of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 to indicate that subsection 81(3) of that Act applies to quinolineJanuary 15, 2014
Draft Screening Assessments for:
Pseudomonas fluorescens
Priority C lot #2
February 5, 2014

New Substances Program: First new substances assessment summaries for chemicals and polymers published

The fall of 2013 saw the publication of the first Summaries of environmental and human health risk assessment reports for new chemicals and polymer substances for which a restriction has been imposed. The risk assessment summaries inform stakeholders about the findings of the ecological and human health assessment. They also show what action the government took, and why, in relation to those substances when they were proposed to be introduced into Canadian commerce. These first summaries cover substances for which a restriction was published during the first six months of 2013. From now on, summaries will be published twice a year, in the spring and in the fall and will cover restrictions published over a six-month period.

The decision to publish the summaries follows a recommendation from stakeholders and also from a desire by Environment Canada and Health Canada to increase the transparency of the New Substances Program. Previously, the only notification of restrictions on new substances was publication of a notice in the Canada Gazette.

The Domestic Substances List Inventory Update: Information-gathering and stakeholder involvement the focus of 2013 activities

The second phase of the Domestic Substances List Inventory Update was launched on December 1, 2012 with the publication in the Canada Gazette, of a notice under section 71 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999. The notice applied to approximately 2,700 substances that include remaining priorities for assessment. The deadline for submitting information for the second phase was September 4, 2013. Additional information, including voluntary data and information from those granted an extension to the September 4 deadline, was being received until December 4, 2013.

To help provide information to stakeholders and to assist those required to submit information under the mandatory information-gathering survey, the Government of Canada hosted a series of information sessions and workshops through 2013. These included:

  • Web-based information sessions providing background on the CMP and guidance to stakeholders on how to respond to the section 71 notice.
  • Web-based conferencing sessions for walking stakeholders through use of the online reporting tool and the section 71 notice; and
  • Four face-to-face stakeholder workshops held across Canada to provide information on the CMP and the second phase of the Domestic Substances List inventory update initiative.

As was done for the first phase of the Domestic Substances List inventory update, the information collected will be processed and a public summary will be made available. Information gathered in the second phase will help support four specific activities. It will:

  • Update the commercial status of a subset of the remaining priorities under the CMP with information that more accurately reflects their current status in Canadian commerce, for example by identifying themes, monitoring trends, identifying potential exposure scenarios and supporting collaboration with international programs.
  • Help plan the next phase of the CMP, for example by providing information that will be used to set priorities, group substances of similar uses and determine data needs.
  • Provide necessary information for the Rapid Screening Approach, which will allow for more streamlined decision-making for substances by separating out those of lesser concern.
  • Provide necessary information for the Polymer Approach. Polymers account for a substantial portion (about 14%) of the 4,300 priorities identified during Domestic Substances List categorization. The information from the inventory update to the Domestic Substances List will allow for an initial triage of polymers for further information-gathering and future risk-assessment activities.

CMP Science Committee: First meeting in view

Ensuring a strong science foundation for decision-making is one of the priorities of the CMP. As one of several steps in support of this, Health Canada and Environment Canada have created a science committee to contribute expertise pertaining to scientific considerations moving forward in the CMP.

The CMP Science Committee will hold its first face-to-face meeting in February 2014. The creation of the Science Committee follows the end of the mandate of the Challenge Advisory Panel, which was established in the first phase of the CMP to examine the use of weight-of-evidence and precaution in risk assessments. The role of the new CMP Science Committee is to provide external, scientific expertise to Health Canada and Environment Canada on scientific issues. Members could be asked, for example, to consider methodologies and approaches such as how to address data poor substances and cumulative risks. The government will present issues to the committee as the need arises.

The 10 committee members were selected for their expertise in environmental and/or biological sciences, including ecological or human health effects, exposure, and risk characterization. Representation on the committee also includes individuals with knowledge of other chemicals management frameworks and of industry. Members, who sit on a volunteer basis, have been appointed for three years. A call for members was issued in 2013 and the final list of members as well as future meeting reports will be made available on the Chemical Substances website.

Biomonitoring component of Canadian Health Measures Survey released

In April 2013, Health Canada released the Second Report on Human Biomonitoring of Environmental Chemicals in Canada. This technical report provides the results of the biomonitoring component from the second cycle (2009-2011) of the Canadian Health Measures Survey, the first of which was released in August 2010. It presents a comprehensive set of data on the exposure of the Canadian population to 91 environmental chemicals, such as bisphenol A and lead, and is the first cycle to include data for children aged 3 to 5 years.

The survey, led by Statistics Canada in partnership with Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada, is an ongoing national study that collects information relevant to the health of Canadians through home interviews and direct physical measurements. The biomonitoring component of the survey involves the collection and analysis of blood and urine samples to measure concentrations of certain environmental chemicals. The survey also provides information on chronic and infectious disease, physical fitness, nutrition and other factors that influence health.

The biomonitoring data obtained in the survey will enable scientists, health professionals and policy makers to compare levels of chemicals among different populations, identify priority chemicals for which further action should be taken to protect the public’s health, and contribute to international chemicals management programs. To date, biomonitoring data from the survey have been used to determine baseline levels of chemicals in the Canadian population; these have been used in risk assessment and risk management activities under the CMP. Biomonitoring data from future cycles of the survey may also be used to track trends and assess the effectiveness of risk management strategies under the CMP.

Data collection for the third cycle of the Canadian Health Measures Survey is expected to be completed in December 2013, and the release of the biomonitoring results from the third cycle is planned to start in March 2015. Data collection for the fourth cycle will begin in January 2014, and planning is under way for future cycles.

Canada working on nanomaterials at home and abroad

Nanomaterials are increasingly being used in the marketplace in a wide range of products and substances. As part of its ongoing efforts to mitigate the potential health risks or risks to the environment of nanomaterials manufactured in or imported into Canada, and to help realize their health benefits, the Government of Canada undertook several initiatives in this area in 2013 at home and abroad.

Internationally

Canada is working with partners to develop scientific and research capacities, as well as the knowledge base that will support future regulatory activity. Canada is actively involved in forums such as the Canada-U.S. Regulatory Cooperation Council and the OECD. For example, the Canada-U.S. Regulatory Cooperation Council has a nanotechnology initiative looking at how Canada and the United States assess and manage the potential risks posed by nanomaterials to human health and the environment. Canada is also working collaboratively with other OECD countries within the Working Party on Manufactured Nanomaterials, a harmonization effort to inform on the environmental and health and safety implications of manufactured nanomaterials. In addition to co-chairing projects under the working party, Canada has built domestic research capacity and successfully fed critical information to support the working party’s Sponsorship Program, a collective effort to generate standardized test data on manufactured nanomaterials.

Domestically

Under the CMP’s New Substances Program, nanomaterials are assessed to determine if there is a risk posed to human health or the environment, and to manage any risks. Work so far has allowed Canada to understand that there is no need to develop a specific regulatory regime to deal with nanomaterials; the current regulatory framework, with some adjustment, is suitable.

What’s coming?

Watch for the Canada-U.S. Regulatory Cooperation Council to hold its final stakeholder workshop and issue its final reports in early 2014. The reports will include recommendations about ways in which Canada and the U.S. can align their nanomaterial regulatory work, including the application of consistent risk assessment approaches and methodologies and identifying categories of nanomaterials.

One important outcome is the development of consistent policy principles on the regulatory oversight of nanomaterials. The government recently completed a public consultation on these principles, and is looking to finalize them in early 2014.

International component of the Chemicals Management Plan

Canada’s CMP relies on continued cooperation with international partners and organizations to support international commitments, keep up with advances in science, share information, influence international agendas and build relationships. We engage at three different levels: multilateral, regional and bilateral.

Decorative image - Test tubes

Recent Highlights on the International Front:

  • The Minamata Convention on Mercury, a global legally binding agreement aimed at reducing mercury pollution, was agreed to in January 2013 and signed by Canada and 91 other governments on October 11, 2013. The treaty covers the lifecycle of mercury, including provisions on mercury supply, trade, use in products and processes, control and reduction of emissions and releases, storage, waste and contaminated sites.
  • From April 28 to May 10, 2013 Canada participated in the ordinary and extraordinary meetings of the conferences of the parties to the three conventions that address international management of chemicals and wastes: the Stockholm Convention on persistent organic pollutants; the Rotterdam Convention on the prior informed consent procedure for certain hazardous chemicals and pesticides in international trade; and the Basel Convention on the control of trans-boundary movement of hazardous wastes and their disposal. It is the first time these meetings have been held together.
  • The renewed Canada-United States Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement entered into force in February 2013. Annex 3 (Chemicals of Mutual Concern) of the Agreement consolidates all commitments regarding chemicals. It sets up a new dynamic binational process for identifying chemicals of mutual concern and commits Canada and the United States to develop binational strategies for addressing these chemicals with a view to eliminating or reducing releases of harmful chemicals in the Great Lakes.

Highlights of What’s Coming

  • The next meeting of the OECD Joint Meeting on Chemicals will take place in February 2014. The OECD Environment, Health and Safety Program was created to help government regulators involved in managing chemicals operate more efficiently and effectively. Canada and the OECD have three major areas of cooperation: scientific coordination and assessment of chemicals; information and data sharing; and methodologies, technical approaches and guidance. It has led so far to industry and government saving an estimated $200 million each year.
  • A Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management regional meeting for a group of Western European and other countries is scheduled to take place on the margins of the OECD Joint Meeting on Chemicals in February 2014. This group includes the European Union, Japan, the United States, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, Norway and New Zealand. The Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management is a voluntary policy framework to support the World Summit on Sustainable Development goal of ensuring that, by 2020, chemicals are produced and used in ways that minimize significant adverse impacts on the environment and human health. Of particular importance at the regional meeting will be discussions on the orientation and guidance document that will set priorities and recommend actions for enhanced implementation toward the 2020 goal.
  • Ongoing cooperation with the European Chemicals Agency has led to regular contacts, facilitating discussions and better understanding of topical issues. Canada is working on renewing its work plan under a memorandum of understanding with the agency. We are also continuing to work with other partners, including the United States, Mexico, Australia and China.

Publications to watch for in the next six months

Decorative image - Becher and Erlenmeyer

Draft screening assessments and Risk Management Scopes (when needed) for:

  • 28 Pharmaceutical Substances
  • Aromatic amines
  • Aspergillus awamori
  • Aspergillus  brasiliensis
  • Azo acid dyes
  • Azo basic dyes
  • Azo direct and reactive dyes
  • Azo metal complexes and other azo substances
  • Certain methylenediphenyl diisocyanate and diamine (MDI/MDA) substances
  • Cobalt-containing substances
  • Enterobacter aerogenes
  • Ethene
  • Ethylbenzene
  • Hexachloroethane
  • Hydrogen sulphide (H2S)
  • Internationally Classified Substance Grouping
  • Phenol, 2-(2H-benzotriazol-2-yl)-4,6-bis(1,1-dimethylpropyl)- (BDTP)
  • PSSA Stream 4 Petroleum and Refinery Gases (Liquefied Petroleum Gases), Heavy Fuel Oils, Natural Gas Condensates and Petrolatum and Waxes
  • Substituted Diphenylamines Substance Grouping (SPDAs)

Final screening assessments and Risk Management Scopes (when needed) for:

  • PSSA Stream 2 Petroleum and Refinery Gases
  • PSSA Stream 3 Aviation Fuels, Fuel Oil No. 2 and Fuel Oils 4,6, Residual

Risk management instruments for:

  • Addition of Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) and Perfluorooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) to Prohibition Regulations (Draft Risk Management Instrument)
  • Addition of Ethanol, 2-chloro-, phosphate (3:1) (Tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate) (TCEP) to the Regulations Amending Schedule 2 to the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act
  • Consultation on the Revised Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist, addition of Solvent Red 23 and Hexanedioic acid, bis(2-ethylhexyl) ester DEHA
  • Final Code of Practice for 2-Butanone Oxime (MEKO)
  • Hydrazine Pollution prevention (P2) Plan (Draft Risk Management Instrument)
  • Order to adopt the Significant New Activity Requirements for 8 substances in Batches 8 and 9
  • Consultation on the proposed Addition of CMP substances to Environmental Emergency (E2) Regulations
  • Proposed Addition of PSSA Stream 1 Petroleum and Refinery Gases to Schedule 1 of CEPA 1999 (List of Toxic Substances)

Information Gathering for:

  • Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)

Significant New Activity Publication for:

  • Notice of Intent to adopt the Significant New Activity Requirements for 15 substances identified from the Rapid Screening of substances in Phase One of the Domestic Substances List Inventory Update