EAERE is listed as one of the European Chemical Agency’s (ECHA) stakeholder organizations. The Agency, located in Helsinki, is the driving force among regulatory authorities in implementing the EU’s groundbreaking chemicals legislation called REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) that came into force on June 1st 2007 for the benefit of human health and the environment in Europe.
Since 2012 EAERE has observer status at meetings of the Socio-Economic Assessment Committee (SEAC), convened by ECHA in Helsinki. Prof. Roy Brouwer (University of Waterloo) and Dr. Mike Holland (Ecometrics Research and Consulting – EMRC, and Imperial College London) are the current EAERE delegates. Both have long-standing collaborations with ECHA and European member states in various projects related to the risks of chemicals.

REACH is a regulation of the European Union, designed to improve the protection of human health and the environment from the risks that can be posed by chemicals.  It is also intended to enhance the competitiveness of the EU chemicals industry by removing barriers to innovation.

The processes of most relevance to SEAC concern the evaluation of:

  • Dossiers proposing Restriction of specific chemicals, either in the form of an outright ban, or for certain uses of hazardous substances; and
  • Applications for Authorisation, where companies seek permission to use specific substances in specific applications where they would otherwise be banned.

SEAC’s role is primarily to assess information collected on the relevant socio-economic aspects of the dossiers/applications, to assess whether a restriction or authorisation is cost-effective and serves the best interests of society taking account of the avoided risks to health and the environment from additional controls on chemicals, costs to businesses and wider costs and benefits to society.  SEAC collaborates closely with  other technical experts in the Risk Assessment Committee (RAC), which have specific scientific expertise in the risks to health and the environment of chemicals and risk management.

Read the Socio-Economic Assessment Committee (SEAC) briefings: