Chemicals are essential for the well-being, high living standards and comfort of modern society. They are used in many sectors, including health, energy, mobility and housing.
However, most chemicals have hazardous properties which can harm the environment and human health.
The EU already has sophisticated chemicals laws in place, but global chemicals production is expected to double by 2030. The already widespread use of chemicals will also increase, including in consumer products.
The European Commission published a chemicals strategy for sustainability on 14 October 2020. It is part of the EU’s zero pollution ambition, which is a key commitment of the European Green Deal.
The EU’s chemicals strategy aims to
- better protect citizens and the environment
- boost innovation for safe and sustainable chemicals
- banning the most harmful chemicals in consumer products - allowing their use only where essential
- account for the cocktail effect of chemicals when assessing risks from chemicals
- phasing out the use of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the EU, unless their use is essential
- boosting the investment and innovative capacity for production and use of chemicals that are safe and sustainable by design, and throughout their life cycle
- promoting the EU’s resilience of supply and sustainability of critical chemicals
- establishing a simpler “one substance one assessment” process for the risk and hazard assessment of chemicals
- playing a leading role globally by championing and promoting high standards and not exporting chemicals banned in the EU
Learn more about the implementation of the strategy.
- 19 December 2022Commission proposed a revised Regulation on classification, labelling and packaging of chemicals (CLP) and introduced new hazard classes
- 8 December 2022Recommendation on a framework for safe and sustainable by design chemicals
- 10 June 2022Commission clarifies definition on nanomaterials
- 25 April 2022Commission publishes REACH Restrictions Roadmap
- 20 January 2022Commission launches public consultation on REACH revision - now available in all EU languages
- 9 August 2021Commission launches public consultation on CLP revision
- 14 October 2020Publication of chemicals strategy
- 9 May 2020Publication of chemicals strategy roadmap
For more information on the roadmap and feedback, visit here.
- 11 December 2019Publication of the European Green Deal
- 19 December 2022: Commission sets up rules to identify endocrine disruptors and long-lasting chemicals and to improve labelling
- 8 December 2022: Recommendation for safe and sustainable chemicals published
- 10 June 2022: Commission revises the definition of nanomaterials
- 20 January 2022: Commission launches public consultation on REACH revision
- 20 January 2022:Register for the stakeholder workshop on the concept of 'essential uses'
- 11 January 2022: Register for the second stakeholders workshop on safe and sustainable by design criteria for chemicals and materials
- 26 November 2021: Chemicals strategy: high-level roundtable adopts joint report on enforcement and compliance
- 25 November 2021: Chemicals strategy: high-level roundtable discusses progress and joint report on enforcement and compliance
- 9 August 2021: Commission launches public consultation on CLP revision
- 7 May 2021: Chemicals strategy: Commission publishes roadmaps on the revision of REACH and CLP
- 16 March 2021: Chemicals strategy: Commission publishes members of high-level roundtable
- 4 March 2021: Chemicals strategy: call for applications for high-level roundtable
- 14 October 2020: Press release on Commission adoption of new Chemicals Strategy
- 21-22 September 2022: The Fourth Annual Forum on Endocrine Disruptors
- 1 June 2022: Information session on ‘one substance, one assessment’ for stakeholders and citizens
- 22 March 2022:Second stakeholders workshop on safe and sustainable by design criteria for chemicals and materials
- 3 March 2022: Stakeholder workshop on the concept of ‘Essential uses’
- 19 March 2021: Safe and sustainable by design criteria for chemicals, materials and products - first Stakeholders workshop
- Communication: Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability. Towards a toxic-free environment