May 12, 2022

European Agency to Assess Potential Exposure Limits for Four Carcinogens

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) seeks evidence related to the scientific evaluation of occupational exposure limits for 1,2,3-trichloropropane, 1,2-dichloropropane, 2,3-epoxypropyl methacrylate (glycidyl methacrylate), and 2-chloro-1,3-butadiene (chloroprene). According to ECHA, all four substances are classified under carcinogen category 1B, which means that they are presumed to have carcinogenic potential for humans based on evidence in animals. ECHA explains that the European Commission has tasked the agency with evaluating exposure to these substances to assess the option of airborne occupational exposure limits, other limit values such as biological limit values and biological guidance values, and notations.

ECHA describes 1,2,3-trichloropropane as a chemical intermediate and cross-linking agent in the production of polymers. According to the agency, 1,2-dichloropropane is used as an industrial solvent and a chemical intermediate, while glycidyl methacrylate is primarily used in the production of epoxy polymers and vinyl and acrylic resins. Chloroprene is used in the manufacture of a number of products, including adhesives, automotive or industrial parts, and coatings.

ECHA intends to use the information it gathers on uses, exposure, health effects, toxicology, epidemiology, and modes of action of the four substances to help the agency draft reports related to exposure limits for these substances in the workplace. ECHA’s calls for evidence provide stakeholders an opportunity to express their views and concerns while the agency is in the early phases of developing its scientific reports on OELs for 1,2,3-trichloropropane, 1,2-dichloropropane, glycidyl methacrylate, and chloroprene. The deadline for comments is Aug. 1.