• Home
  • News
  • ETRA Response to ECHA Consultation on Microplastics

ETRA Response to ECHA Consultation on Microplastics

ETRA Response to ECHA Consultation on Microplastics Image 1

On 20 September 2019, ECHA closed the Public Consultation that it had launched on the Restriction proposal of intentionally added Micro-plastics. This was the first consultation step of a long and complex procedure that had begun in 2018 after the EU published its plastics strategy in February 2018.

The Commission requested that ECHA develop a restriction proposal for ‘microplastics that are intentionally added to consumer and professional products’. Then ECHA (the Dossier Submitter) submitted two restriction proposals on intentionally added microplastics in a variety of consumer and professional products.

According to the proposal:

  • Polymers shall not, from (approx. 2021), be placed on the market as a substance on its own or in a mixture as a micro-plastic in a concentration equal to or greater than 0.01% w/w
    • ‘micro-plastic’ means a material consisting of solid polymer-containing particles, to which additives or other substances may have been added, and where ≥ 1% w/w of particles have (i) all dimensions 1nm ≤ x ≤ 5mm, or (ii), for fibres, a length of 3nm ≤ x ≤ 15mm and length to diameter ratio of >3
    • Infill material fulfils the definition of microplastic, thus falls under the restriction proposal

The Public consultation of the report started on 20 March 2019 and it was held open, for 6 months, until 20th September. The next steps of the procedure will be:

  • An Opinion from RAC is due in March 2020
  • A Public consultation on SEAC’s draft opinion begins during the spring of 2020
  • SEAC’s final opinion is expected in June 2020
  • The Commission decision is expected in 2021

Some thousands of response have been submitted from many different sectors and bodies. ETRA submitted its Response (Number 2446) which included a range of critical issues :

  • The inclusion of infill materials in the micro-plastic definition is misleading and contradictory with the definition itself and with several parts of the Restriction Report.
  • Specifically, recycled rubber granulate used as infill material are not micro-scopic. But there are other more evident discrepancies.
  • ETRA defined 10 reasons why SBR infill material should not be included.
  • A more precise reading of the definition of ‘micro-plastic’ in the Restriction Report could eliminate ‘infill material’ from the discussion and could possibly lead to derogation.

The Response is the result of team work by the ETRA sport Committee, with a secondary objective, i.e., to raise points for reflection that could help other stakeholders and scientific bodies to enter into the debate.

The ETRA Response is available here below for downloading.

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.