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Evaluation of PBT and vPvB substances based on exposure dynamics, use-specific impacts and costs for emission reduction or abatement in the context of REACH

: Gabbert, S.; Oosterhuis, F.; Hahn, Stefan; Klein, M.; Nendza, M.

Society for Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry -SETAC-:
SETAC Europe 28th Annual Meeting 2018. Abstract Book : Responsible and Innovative Research for Environmental Quality, 13 - 17 May 2018, Rome, Italy
Brussels: SETAC Europe, 2018
S.93-94, Abstract 430
Society for Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC Annual Meeting) <28, 2018, Rome>
Fraunhofer ITEM ()

A key objective of the European chemicals legislation REACH is to ensure that the risks caused by substances of very high concern (SVHC) are adequately controlled. The two regulatory procedures adopted in REACH to control the risks arising from SVHCs are authorisation and restriction. Both regulatory instruments make use of socio-economic analysis (SEA), which is generally defined to be a tool for assessing all relevant positive and negative impacts from substances’ use or non-use, and for comparing these impacts across different scenarios. Impacts arising from chemicals’ use, including PBTs/vPvBs, are use-specific. Furthermore, due to stock pollution properties of PBTs/vPvBs, impacts may last for long periods and even long after emissions have ceased. In addition, information about (long-term) impacts needs to be balanced with costs of emission reduction and abatement. Acknowledging that monetary valuation of impacts using stated or revealed preference methods is not possible for a broader set of PBT/vPvB substances, the evaluation of PBT/vPvB substances in a SEA has to rely on cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA). This requires specifying benchmark values, i.e. target values (standards) by means of which it can be determined whether or not the costs of a control measure are excessive. This paper suggests an approach for the evaluation of PBT/vPvB substances by means of CEA that accounts for the complex environmental distribution patterns, and that allows balancing (long-term) impacts from PBT/vPvB use against costs for emission reduction and abatement. The approach proceeds along a sequence of steps and uses different analytic tools and data. Starting with a grouping and ranking of PBT/vPvB substances, exposure dynamics are analysed with a multimedia stock pollution approach. Based on the assessment of exposure dynamics in different compartments, impacts arising from the stock can be evaluated via different routes. To assess the cost-effectiveness and proportionality of possible (policy-) measures for PBT/vPvB control, the routes to impact evaluation are linked to assessments of costs for restricting or stopping a specific or multiple uses of a PBT/vPvB substance, and to benchmarks, being standard values of a specific parameter to which the actual/estimated value of that parameter can be compared. As illustrative case study, the approach is applied to perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS).