Switzerland-based Bluesign Technologies has completed the 2020 revision of all its chemical substances lists.

The revision, which came into effect on Friday (29 January), incorporates new scientific knowledge on the toxicological and ecological profile of substances, new legal classification of chemical substances, new legal consumer safety limits, revised risk assessments based on the Bluesign Criteria for chemical assessment, feedback from experts of the Chemical Experts Group (CEG) as well as new analytical standards.

It covers all the updates to the restrictions for chemical substances published in Bluesign System Substances List (BSSL), Bluesign System Black Limits (BSBL), and Bluesign RSL.

The BSSL specifies limits for chemical substances in articles (consumer safety limits), while the BSBL specifies threshold limits for chemical substances in finished chemical products such as auxiliaries or dyes. The compilation of substances in the BSBL includes all substances for which a precautionary hazard-based threshold limit is defined.

The Bluesign RSL, meanwhile, is an extract of the BSSL and contains consumer safety limits and recommended testing methods for the most important and legally restricted substances in textile and leather articles and accessories.

With the 2020 update, the structural concept regarding BSSL which defines consumer safety limits and BSBL are improved. Substance groups that are not relevant for consumer safety but had been listed in the past for a more comprehensive substances list are no longer included in the BSSL. They are now regulated by BSBL (e.g. fluorinated greenhouse gases).

Bluesign has recently developed a new tool called Bluesign Substance Navigator which was used for the 2020 revisions of all chemical substances lists. 

"We are pleased to announce that 2020 revisions of BSSL, BSBL and Bluesign RSL are now complete. The lists are generated for the first time from a new substance database, the Bluesign Substance Navigator. This brand new database is still under development and we will be announcing the launch of this powerful tool in the near future" said Hartwig Tews, Bluesign head of technical product development.

Beside some layout changes, with the 2020 revisions Bluesign also introduces the following innovations:

New term: Sector of Use
A new term used in the revised documents is the "Sector of Use". This is part of an innovative concept for the assessment of chemical products, where Bluesign uses an approach similar to REACH. This allows a product, process and industry specific assessment of risks to human and the environment, that can be adapted to all kinds of industries. Typical sectors of use are for example manufacture of textile products or manufacture of rubber products.

Substance groups:
The annexes of the new BSSL and BSBL contain much more substances than before. The reason is that many entries in BSSL and BSBL refer to a substance group and not to individual substances. With the IT data base which refers as strict as possible to clearly defined CAS numbers much more chemical substances are included and as a result much more hits to substance groups can be assigned now. Finally, BSBL and BSSL have now a higher degree of completeness regarding the regulated substance groups.

All revised documents including changelogs are public and can be found as a download file on Bluesign corporate website.