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EU Parliament presses Commission on cadmium monitoring under CMD

Organisation - Council of the European Union - Justus Lipsius building. The Council of the European Union

The European Parliament is leaning on the European Commission to decide on including a wider range of monitoring techniques for cadmium, under the carcinogens and mutagens Directive (CMD), within three years.

The third revision to the CMD is currently being discussed in trilogues between the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers. The first trilogue took place on 16 January under the Romanian Presidency of the Council.

A partially redacted Council discussion note seen by Chemical Watch suggests that the Commission should be bound to assessing, no later than three years after the new CMD enters into force, whether it should add the combination of an airborne occupational exposure limit with a biological limit value for cadmium.

The lack of a wider range of monitoring techniques for the metal has been a sticking point in discussions on the proposal.

The Council previously proposed binding the Commission to considering the introduction of a biological limit value within five years.

But Parliament wanted to see it introduced into the CMD right away, according to the trilogue note. It argued that some member states already use biomonitoring for cadmium.

Parliament then moved towards the Council’s position but insisted on a shorter deadline for the Commission’s assessment, the Council explains in the note. It adds that member states could continue to apply measures, such as a biological limit value, at the national level.

Negotiations on the revision proposal are ongoing and all parties have yet to agree on this compromise, the Council told Chemical Watch.

The Council is also proposing to:

  • reintroduce references to the dermal and respiratory sensitisation of beryllium and formaldehyde in the annex to the proposed revision; and
  • require the Commission to assess the possibility of widening the scope of the CMD to include hazardous drugs.

And the trilogues are discussing when the transitional period for the new limit values should start. However, the Council did not disclose details of this discussion to Chemical Watch. "Once the legislative act in question is adopted (any) legislative document relating to this Directive will be made available to the public," it said.

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