Category Archives: nl2015q4

UAE – Update on Proposed RoHS Regulation

In a previous post, we discussed the United Arab Emirates (UAE) proposed RoHS regulation that they had notified to the WTO. The UAE RoHS proposal restricts the same 10 substance groups and at the same threshold level that are currently restricted in EU RoHS Directive. However, a transition period for the 4 phthalate substances is not provided for most EEE product categories, with the exception of medical devices and monitoring and control instruments which have until July 22, 2021 (same date as in the EU RoHS Directive).

The EU has submitted a response to the UAE WTO notification requesting clarification on this lack of a transition period for the phthalate substances in most product categories. The EU response also highlighted that the Annex III and Annex IV list of exemptions are not perfectly up to date with the EU RoHS Directive exemptions and raised some of the conformity assessment anomalies that we discussed in our September article.

Contact ECD Compliance, for services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.

IEC – International Standard on RoHS Technical Documentation Started

The IEC has started developing an International Standard on RoHS technical documentation. This will be an international version of the European standard, EN 50581:2012 “Technical documentation for the assessment of electrical and electronic products with respect to the restriction of hazardous substances” which was developed by the European CENELEC standards organization under mandate from the European Commission.

Technical documentation is one of the mandatory requirements imposed on manufacturers for compliance to the EU RoHS Directive and must be in place before an EEE product may be placed on the EU market (for foreign manufactured products, placing on the market usually occurs at the time of import). This EN 50581 standard is already in place for the EU RoHS Directive, but there is a strong desire to leverage this standard for use in other worldwide RoHS regulations. A new work item proposal to develop such a standard within the IEC was distributed earlier this year. The work item was broadly approved, including USA, Canada, China, Japan, Korea, and most EU countries.

The standard will be known as IEC 63000 and is being developed under IEC/TC111 (Environmental standardization for electrical and electronic products and systems). EN 50581 is expected to be leveraged heavily in the development of the International standard. The project team held its first meeting in Brussels on October 21-22, 2015 and will establish its first committee draft (CD) of the standard at an upcoming meeting on November 18, 2015.

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information and services to develop or assess RoHS Technical Documentation or to stay up to date on International Environmental Standards.

USA – Court of Appeal Denies SEC Request on Conflict Minerals

On November 9, 2015, the US Court of Appeals refused the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Amnesty International requests for rehearing en banc of the court’s Aug. 18, 2015 decision in the Conflict Minerals Rule litigation. The request for rehearing is with regard to whether compelling companies to describe products as having “not been found to be DRC conflict free” violates the First Amendment.

However, the refusal by the Court doesn’t settle the issue and the saga continues. There are still several options available to the SEC and there is a lot of speculation underway as to what happens next. For example, the SEC could file an appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court. We’ll need to let the dust settle and look to see what the SEC does next.

The ruling itself is very briefly, only really saying “the petitions be denied”.

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information and services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.

EU – ECHA Announces New Data Available on Nanomaterials

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) published an article announcing that new data has become available from the OECD on nanomaterials. The data covers 11 commercially viable nanomaterials.

New data on 11 commercially viable nanomaterials was made available in June as part of a seven-year testing programme by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The information gives those companies who have registered or will register these nanomaterials in the EU, an opportunity to consider the data in their registration dossiers.

“If the information is relevant for the assessment of safe use of your substance, we encourage you to update your registration dossier to make sure the substances are used safely,” says Jenny Holmqvist, coordinator of nano activities in ECHA and Chair of the OECD steering group on the Testing and Assessment of Manufactured Nanomaterials.

“The OECD testing programme has made it possible to release an unprecedented volume of nano-specific data to the public,” says Jenny Holmqvist. The aim of the programme was firstly, to assess whether the existing test guidelines for substances need to be adapted to consider nano-specific issues, and secondly, to respond to the growing need for nano-specific data.

The 11 nanomaterials include:

  • fullerenes
  • single-walled carbon nanotubes
  • multi-walled carbon nanotubes
  • silver
  • gold
  • dendrimers
  • silicon dioxide
  • nanoclays
  • titanium dioxide
  • cerium dioxide
  • zinc oxide

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information and services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.

 

IEC – The IEC 62321-7-1 Standard for testing Cr6+on Metal Coatings is Published

The standardized test method for determining if hexavalent chromium is present on metal coatings was revised and published on September 16, 2015. The boiling water extraction test has been revised and the spot test which was provided in the original IEC 62321:2008 standard has been removed because of its unreliability. IEC provides the following abstract of the standard:

IEC 62321-7-1:2015 describes a boiling water extraction procedure intended to provide a qualitative determination of the presence of hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) in colourless and coloured corrosion-protection coatings on metallic samples. In this procedure, when Cr(VI) in a sample is detected below the 0,10 g/cm2 LOQ (limit of quantification), the sample is considered to be negative for Cr(VI). Since Cr(VI) may not be uniformly distributed in the coating even within the same sample batch, a “grey zone” between 0,10 g/cm2 and 0,13 g/cm2 has been established as “inconclusive” to reduce inconsistent results due to unavoidable coating variations. In this case, additional testing may be necessary to confirm the presence of Cr(VI). When Cr(VI) is detected above 0,13 g/cm2, the sample is considered to be positive for the presence of Cr(VI) in the coating layer.

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information and services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.

EU – Study for Enterprise Servers and Data Storage

A European Technical Assistance Study for Enterprise Servers and Data Storage has started. The study, which is a follow-up to the Lot 9 preparatory study conducted over the past couple years, will include two stakeholder meetings, the first of which is scheduled for 13th November in Brussels. The Study focuses on existing standards and standards in development that could be leveraged for a regulation in this area:

This study provides the European Commission with technical assistance specifically for enterprise servers and data storage (DG Entr Lot 9). It aims to support tasks stemming from the regulatory process related to the EU Ecodesign Directive and Energy Labelling Directive and their implementing measures, and builds on the findings of the DG Entr Lot 9 Preparatory Study.

The goal is to prepare technical documents related to standardised measurement methods and to harmonised standards.

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information on the study and how we can keep your organization aware of the latest developments that could impact to your products and markets.

Taiwan – WTO notification to extend Taiwan RoHS to Media Players and Projects

Taiwan has issued a WTO TBT (Technical Barriers to Trade) notice that they are extending their proposed RoHS marking regulation to cover two additional products: network media players and projects. The proposed Taiwan RoHS regulation includes Taiwan specific marking and certification requirements.

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information on the proposed regulation and for services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.

EU Judgment – SVHC Reporting Required for First Article

SVHC obligations for products imported into Europe have just become significantly more complicated. Manufacturers will need to start tracking and reporting SVHC content in components in their product to comply with today’s European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling,

The ECJ issued its anticipated judgment on the contentious issue of interpretation of ‘article’ within the EU REACH regulation as it relates to SVHC reporting and communication requirements. The changes are captured in the last few paragraph of the “Judgment of the Court (Third Chamber)”:

On those grounds, the Court (Third Chamber) hereby rules:
1. Article 7(2) of Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH), establishing a European Chemicals Agency, amending Directive 1999/45/EC and repealing Council Regulation (EEC) No 793/93 and Commission Regulation (EC) No 1488/94 as well as Council Directive 76/769/EEC and Commission Directives 91/155/EEC, 93/67/EEC, 93/105/EC and 2000/21/EC, as amended by Commission Regulation (EU) No 366/2011 of 14 April 2011, must be interpreted as meaning that, for the purposes of application of that provision, it is for the producer to determine whether a substance of very high concern identified in accordance with Article 59(1) of that regulation, as amended, is present in a concentration above 0.1% weight by weight of any article it produces and, for the importer of a product made up of more than one article, to determine for each article whether such a substance is present in a concentration above 0.1% weight by weight of that article.

2. Article 33 of Regulation No 1907/2006, as amended, must be interpreted as meaning that, for the purposes of application of that provision, it is for the supplier of a product one or more constituent articles of which contain(s) a substance of very high concern identified in accordance with Article 59(1) of that regulation in a concentration above 0.1% weight by weight of that article, to inform the recipient and, on request, the consumer, of the presence of that substance by providing them, as a minimum, with the name of the substance in question.

In developing its ruling, the court did not find a legal basis in the REACH regulation for an article to lose its status as an article when it is assembled into a more complex product.  This “no longer an article” principle had been the basis of ECHA’s guidance for calculating percent SVHC based on the entire weight of the finished imported article. Therefore, the court ruled that all articles must meet the requirements specified in the REACH regulation.

The court ruling confirms the first article interpretatation advocated by France, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Austria. The implication being that SVHC reporting and communication obligations associated with an article do not disappear when an article is included as a component in a larger, complex article.  This suggests that manufacturers and importers must assess the SVHC concentrations in each article of a complex product and, in turn, meet the communication, notification and authorisation obligations based on this determination.

ECD Compliance provides services to assess your compliance requirements for EU REACH and other global environmental regulations and to implement compliance procedures.

 

 

 

 

EU – RoHS Exemption Consultation – Pack 9

Consultants for the EU Commission have launched a public consultation on the remaining EU RoHS exemption renewal requests (the grouping is referred to as Pack 9). The consultation, involving 29 Annex III exemptions, started on August 21, 2015 and will close on October 16, 2015. The list of exemptions covered by the consultation is shown in Table 1.

Table 1: RoHS Exemptions included in the Pack 9 Consultation

Exemption NumberExemption Description
Exemption 1(a-e)"Mercury in single capped (compact) fluorescent lamps not exceeding (per burner)":
(a) For general lighting purposes < 30 W: 5 mg
(b) For general lighting purposes ≥ 30 W and < 50 W: 5 mg
(c) For general lighting purposes ≥ 50 W and < 150 W: 5 mg
(d) For general lighting purposes ≥ 150 W: 15 mg
(e) For general lighting purposes with circular or square structural shape and tube diameter ≤ 17 mm
Exemption 1(f)"Mercury in single capped (compact) fluorescent lamps not exceeding (per burner):
(f) For special purposes: 5 mg"
Exemption 2(a)(1-5)"Mercury in double-capped linear fluorescent lamps for general lighting purposes not exceeding (per lamp):
(1) Tri-band phosphor with normal lifetime and a tube diameter < 9 mm (e.g. T2): 5 mg
(2) Tri-band phosphor with normal lifetime and a tube diameter ≥ 9 mm and ≤ 17 mm (e.g. T5): 5 mg
(3) Tri-band phosphor with normal lifetime and a tube diameter > 17 mm and ≤ 28 mm (e.g. T8): 5 mg
(4) Tri-band phosphor with normal lifetime and a tube diameter > 28 mm (e.g. T12): 5 mg
(5) Tri-band phosphor with long lifetime (≥ 25 000 h): 8 mg"
Exemption 2(b)(3)"Mercury in other fluorescent lamps not exceeding (per lamp):
(3) Non-linear tri-band phosphor lamps with tube diameter > 15 mm (e.g. T9) "
Exemption 2(b)(4)"Mercury in other fluorescent lamps not exceeding (per lamp):
(4) Lamps for other general lighting and special purposes (e.g. induction lamps): 15 mg per lamp "
Exemption 3(a-c)"Mercury in cold cathode fluorescent lamps and external electrode fluorescent lamps (CCFL and EEFL) for special purposes not exceeding (per lamp):
(a) Short length (≤ 500 mm): 3.5 mg per lamp
(b) Medium length (> 500 mm and ≤ 1 500 mm): 5 mg per lamp
(c) Long length (> 1 500 mm): 13 mg per lamp"
Exemption 4(a)"Mercury in other low pressure discharge lamps (per lamp): 15 mg per lamp"
Exemption 4(b)(I-III)"Mercury in High Pressure Sodium (vapour) lamps for general lighting purposes not exceeding (per burner) in lamps with improved colour rendering index Ra > 60:
I) P ≤ 155 W: 30 mg per burner
II) 155 W < P ≤ 405 W: 40 mg per burner
III) P > 405 W: 40 mg per burner"
Exemption 4(c)(I-III)"Mercury in other High Pressure Sodium (vapour) lamps for general lighting purposes not exceeding (per burner):
I) P ≤ 155 W: 25 mg per burner
II) 155 W < P ≤ 405 W: 30 mg per burner
II) 155 W < P ≤ 405 W: 30 mg per burner
III) P > 405 W: 40 mg per burner"
Exemption 4(e)"Mercury in metal halide lamps (MH)"
Exemption 4(f)"Mercury in other discharge lamps for special purposes not specifically mentioned in this Annex"
Exemption 5(b)"Lead in glass of fluorescent tubes not exceeding 0,2 % by weight"
Exemption 6(a)"Lead as an alloying element in steel for machining purposes and in galvanised steel containing up to 0,35 % lead by weight"
Exemption 6(b)"Lead as an alloying element in aluminium containing up to 0,4 % lead by weight"
Exemption 6(c)"Copper alloy containing up to 4 % lead by weight"
Exemption 7(a)"Lead in high melting temperature type solders (i.e. lead- based alloys containing 85 % by weight or more lead)"
Exemption 7(c)-I"Electrical and electronic components containing lead in a glass or ceramic other than dielectric ceramic in capacitors, e.g. piezoelectronic devices, or in a glass or ceramic matrix compound"
Exemption 7(c)-II"Lead in dielectric ceramic in capacitors for a rated voltage of 125 V AC or 250 V DC or higher"
Exemption 7(c)-IV"Lead in PZT based dielectric ceramic materials for capacitors which are part of integrated circuits or discrete semiconductors"
Exemption 8(b)"Cadmium and its compounds in electrical contacts"
Exemption 9"Hexavalent chromium as an anticorrosion agent of the carbon steel cooling system in absorption refrigerators up to 0,75 % by weight in the cooling solution"
Exemption 15"Lead in solders to complete a viable electrical connection between semiconductor die and carrier within integrated circuit flip chip packages"
Exemption 18(b)"Lead as activator in the fluorescent powder (1 % lead by weight or less) of discharge lamps when used as sun tanning lamps containing phosphors such as BSP (BaSi 2 O 5 :Pb)"
Exemption 21"Lead and cadmium in printing inks for the application of enamels on glasses, such as borosilicate and soda lime glasses"
Exemption 24"Lead in solders for the soldering to machined through hole discoidal and planar array ceramic multilayer capacitors"
Exemption 29"Lead bound in crystal glass as defined in Annex I (Categories 1, 2, 3 and 4) of Council Directive 69/493/EEC ( 1 )"
Exemption 32"Lead oxide in seal frit used for making window assemblies for Argon and Krypton laser tubes"
Exemption 34"Lead in cermet-based trimmer potentiometer elements"
Exemption 37"Lead in the plating layer of high voltage diodes on the basis of a zinc borate glass body"

Generally all complex electronics use several of the RoHS exemptios in their components or directly in manufacturing operations. Contact ECD Compliance for services to keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets.

EU – Consultation for SVHC Candidate List (September 2015)

A public consultation on seven new SVHC Candidate List proposals was launched on August 31, 2015 and will continue through October 15, 2015. The new substances proposed for the SVHC Candidate List are listed in Table 2.

Additional information about the substances and the public consultation is available on the ECHA website . Assuming that no major discrepancies are identified during the consultation, the new SVHCs will likely be added to the SVHC Candidate List in December 2015.

The IEC 62474 validation team is currently assessing these substances to determine if they are constituents of EEE.

Table 2: Substances under Consultation for SVHC Candidate List

SubstanceCASProposingExamples of Use
Namenumberauthority
1,3-propanesultone1120-71-4ECHAelectrolyte fluid of lithium ion batteries.
2,4-di-tert-butyl-6-(5-chlorobenzotriazol-2-yl)phenol (UV-327)3864-99-1GermanyUV-protection agents in coatings, plastics, rubber and cosmetics
2-(2H-benzotriazol-2-yl)-4-(tert-butyl)-6-(sec-butyl)phenol (UV-350)36437-37-3GermanyUV-protection agents in coatings, plastics, rubber and cosmetics
Dicyclohexyl phthalate84-61-7Swedenplastisol and in PVC, rubber and plastic articles, and as a phlegmatiser and dispersing agent for formulations of organic peroxides.
hexamethylene diacrylate (hexane-1,6-diol diacrylate)13048-33-4Swedenmanufacturing formulations of coatings and inks and as a cross linking agent in polymerisation processes in the production of resins, rubbers and polymers
Nitrobenzene98-95-3Austriaproduction of chemicals and as a processing aid
Perfluorononan-1-oic acid (2,2,3,3,4,4,5,5,6,6,7,7,8,8,9,9,9-heptadecafluorononanoic acid and its sodium and ammonium salts375-95-1Swedena processing aid for fluoropolymer manufacture, and also as a lubricating oil additive, surfactant for fire extinguishers, cleaning agent, textile antifouling finishing agent, polishing surfactant, waterproofing agents and in liquid crystal display panels
Perfluorononan-1-oic acid (2,2,3,3,4,4,5,5,6,6,7,7,8,8,9,9,9-heptadecafluorononanoic acid and its sodium and ammonium salts21049-39-8Swedena processing aid for fluoropolymer manufacture, and also as a lubricating oil additive, surfactant for fire extinguishers, cleaning agent, textile antifouling finishing agent, polishing surfactant, waterproofing agents and in liquid crystal display panels
Perfluorononan-1-oic acid (2,2,3,3,4,4,5,5,6,6,7,7,8,8,9,9,9-heptadecafluorononanoic acid and its sodium and ammonium salts4149-60-4Swedena processing aid for fluoropolymer manufacture, and also as a lubricating oil additive, surfactant for fire extinguishers, cleaning agent, textile antifouling finishing agent, polishing surfactant, waterproofing agents and in liquid crystal display panels

Contact ECD Compliance, for additional information on the consultation and services to assess your environmental product compliance requirements, keep you up to date on the impact to your products and markets and to implement compliance procedures.