The European Commission is taking action to soothe concerns about the roll-out of its chemical control system REACH.

Visiting European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) in Helsinki today (March 25), industry Commissioner Antonio Tajani and environment Commissioner Janez Potocnik announced criteria for the identification of persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic substances under REACH.

These chemicals will receive special restrictions and the commissioners stressed “all available information is to be considered and in a so-called ‘weight of evidence approach’” when deciding which substances will be categorised.

They also called on EU member states to submit more proposed chemicals for another highly restricted list – “substances of very high concern”.

Only 29 chemicals are currently listed and Tajani and Potocnik said they were “determined to identify” more.

These substances will be subject to a special ‘authorisation’ procedure under REACH, and the Commissioners announced that “long-awaited guidance” on this will “shortly be provided” to ECHA.