Europe – Europe’s microplastics phase-out: SEAC draft opinion on restrictions open for consultation

EU restriction could prevent the release of 500,000 tonnes of microplastics over the next 20 years

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) has published SEAC’s draft opinion on the Annex XV dossier proposing restrictions on intentionally-added microplastics and has opened it up to consultation.

SEAC, the Committee for Socio-economic Analysis, prepares the opinions of ECHA related to the socio-economic impact of possible legislative actions.

The intentionally-added microplastics dossier was supported by the RAC, ECHA’s peer review panel for risk assessment, last month.

RAC’s opinion recommended the following: that it a) wanted to see greater evidence that ‘biodegradable’ polymers (which are excluded from the restriction) are biodegradable in the environment; and b) that there should be no lower size limit in the definition of a microplastic (the ECHA had proposed a lower size limit of 100nm to avoid technical problems from an analytical standpoint)…