Does the proposed new CMD legislation mean substances containing RCS are being banned from commerce?

No. The proposal is put forward only in the context of occupational workers’ health protection. In the EU the classification and labelling of products is ruled by other separate legislation (the CLP Regulation 1278/2008). There is no direct link between these two legislative frameworks. The current proposal addresses respirable dust generated by work processes, not the substance itself.

The COM proposal covers “work involving exposure to respirable crystalline silica dust generated by a work process”. This is a process generated substance which is not placed on the market.

The implementation of the CMD will address protective measures to be taken at the workplace and not for the commerce. The implementation of the CMD has no relationship with and will have no consequence on the classification and labelling or the marketing and use of crystalline silica or products containing it.

This is appropriate since health risks associated to high and prolonged exposure to respirable crystalline silica dust are only observed at the workplace and not in the general environment.

In its impact assessment (SWD 2016 152 final) accompanying the proposal of amendment of the CMD, the Commission writes on page 29 that the CMD is the more appropriate regulatory instrument for respirable crystalline silica and hardwood dust as compared with REACH authorization or restrictions notably because these are process generated in the workplace and are outside scope of REACH.