Canada Adds Isoprene and Epichlorohydrin to Ingredient Hotlist

On Jan. 30, 2009, Health Canada and Environment Canada declared two chemicals used in personal care products to be toxic to the environment and two others as harmful to the environment. The two groups announced the publication of final conclusions and initial risk management approaches for Batch 2 substances in the Chemicals Management Plan. Batch 2 included 16 substances.

Of the 16 substances assessed, thiourea, yellow 34, red 104, isoprene and epichlorohydrin were found to be of concern to human health. Although the organizations conceded that exposure to these five substances was low, regulations are being proposed for four of these substances to prevent them from being used in the future without undergoing a new series of assessments. Isoprene and epichlorohydrin, both found in cosmetics, were designated as carcinogens and added to Canada's Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist. The organizations are encouraging manufacturers to omit them from beauty products.

Also, siloxanes D4 and D5 and 2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenol (TTBP) were found to be of concern for the environment. Siloxanes D4 and D5 are used in cosmetics, and it is proposed that manufacturers employ technology with these substances that controls their release. Regulations will be developed to set a concentration limit for siloxanes D4 and D5 in products and for wastewater generated during the manufacturing process.

The process to address the approximately 200 high-priority substances identified under the challenge will be completed in 2010. The next step in the plan is to evaluate the 14 substances in Batch 8. Industry and other stakeholders are being asked to provide information on these substances that will be used in the draft screening assessments and any risk management that is required.

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