The Canadian “Products Containing Mercury Regulations” were published in the Canada Gazette on November 19, 2014 and come into force on November 8, 2015. The Regulations will prohibit the manufacture and import of products containing elemental mercury or a mercury compound. Exemptions to the mercury prohibition are provided for applications that have no technical alternative – they are similar but not identical to the EU RoHS mercury exemptions. For products that contain mercury, specific labelling and marking requirements are specified in the regulations.
The Regulations apply to any product that contains mercury, including all electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) whether currently included or excluded from the scope of the EU RoHS Directive. In this regard, the Canadian Regulations have a broader applicability than the EU RoHS Directive; however, the exemptions also cover applications that are not relevant to EEE such as use of mercury in dental amalgam.
The regulations do not apply to products that are at end-of-life, waste, a food, drug, or cosmetic, veterinary biologic, pest control product, feed, fertilizer, or explosive, ores, concentrates and by-products of metallurgic operations, and on-road vehicles from the 2016 model year or earlier.
Prohibitions and Exemptions
A product that contains mercury may not be manufactured or imported unless it belongs to a product category that has a specified exemption or if a manufacturer or importer holds a permit issued under the Regulations.
The exemptions are similar to the EU RoHS exemptions but not identical. There are differences in the wording of the allowed applications and in the allowed mercury concentration. A careful comparison is needed to ensure that a product containing mercury meets the Canadian regulation.
The regulations specify additional requirements for products that are imported or manufactured with mercury (for example, under an exemption). The additional requirements include labelling, marking, information on safe use (including when a product such as a lamp breaks), and reporting of mercury quantity that is imported or manufactured.
For product uses that are not covered by an exemption, it is possible to request a permit from Environment Canada.
For additional information or assistance on the Canadian Products Containing Mercury Regulations, contact ECD Compliance.