EU curbs on PCP implemented

Regulations imposing further restrictions on the marketing and use of pentachlorophenol (PCP) came into force on 20 September.1

The regulations implement a 1999 EU Directive more than a year late. The Directive tightened up controls on PCP adopted in 1991 which limited its permissible dioxin content and restricted its marketing and use to a few industrial applications and barred its sale to the public (ENDS Report 216, p 35 )

The changes made by the new Directive include a reduction in the permissible hexachlorodibenzodioxin content of PCP from 4 to 2ppm. They also withdraw authorisation for the marketing and use of PCP as a synthesising or processing agent in industrial installations.

The remaining industrial application for which marketing of PCP is authorised is as a preservative for fibres and heavy duty textiles not intended for clothing or decorative furnishings. As required by the Directive, the regulations prohibit marketing and use in this application after the end of 2008.

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