Polymer rapid screening approach

As a part of the Chemicals Management Plan (CMP), the Government of Canada plans to assess and manage, where appropriate, the potential health and ecological risks associated with certain polymers under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA 1999). These polymers were identified as priorities for further action following the categorization exercise in 2006.

The Rapid Screening Approach

Rapid Screening of Polymers identified from Phase Two of the Domestic Substances List Inventory Update

Based on information submitted pursuant to a section 71 of CEPA 1999 regarding commercial activity in Canada under Phase Two of the Domestic Substances List Inventory Update, 336 polymers were identified for application of a rapid screening approach because they were not reported as being in commerce in Canada at levels greater than 1000 kg during the 2011 calendar year.

View more information on the Rapid Screening Approach.

2015 Data Collection Activities

Preliminary information was collected on polymers through a mandatory survey under Phase 2 of the Domestic Substances List Inventory Update (DSL IU2), published in the Canada Gazette, Part I: Vol. 146, No. 48 - December 1, 2012 (PDF Version – 2,029 K ). Information submitted in response to the DSL IU2 informed the Government of Canada as to whether a candidate substance was in commerce in Canada in a quantity above the reporting threshold of 1000 kg in the 2011 calendar year. For those polymers identified under DSL IU2 as not in commerce at greater than 1000 kg in the 2011 calendar year, a Rapid Screening Approach was applied. For those polymers identified under DSL IU2 as in commerce at greater than 1000 kg, it was determined that further information gathering was needed.

Mandatory Survey - Section 71 Notice

On July 25, 2015, a Notice was issued in the Canada Gazette, Part I: Vol. 149, No. 30– July 25, 2015 (PDF Version – 3,016 K) under section 71 of CEPA 1999. The Notice applies to 302 polymers on the Domestic Substances List (DSL).

The purpose of the section 71 Notice was to obtain information on the manufacture, import and formulation activities of these polymers for the 2014 calendar year. This data is essential for risk assessment and will ensure decisions made are based on the most relevant and up-to-date, information available.

Every person to whom the Notice applied was required to comply no later than 5 p.m. EDT, December 3, 2015.

Please see the Guidance document for responding to the Notice with respect to certain polymers on the Domestic Substances List.

Responses to the section 71 Notice, the Declaration of Stakeholder Interest and the Declaration of Non-Engagement were submitted via Environment Canada's Single Window.

Environment Canada's Single Window provides a single point of access to view and update your information with Environment Canada's regulatory program reporting applications. The Single Window Information Manager allows users to enter, edit or update information about their profile, organizations, facilities and contacts, to manage roles for other users, and to navigate to program-specific reporting tools.

For general inquiries, please contact us and use the subject line "Polymers Inquiry".

Voluntary Data Collection

In February 2015, voluntary data on the polymers was collected from importers and manufacturers. Information collected will be used to inform future risk assessments of the polymers reported to be in commerce above 1000 kg during DSL IU2, and certain polymers that were identified as requiring further assessment based on the rapid screening approach.

Based on remaining essential data needs, it was determined that further information gathering through a mandatory section 71 Notice is needed to inform future risk assessment for these substances.

Polymer Approach Document

Polymers are a unique class of substances, where the same Chemical Abstracts Service registry number (CAS RN) can be used to describe substances that have different molecular weights, toxicity, and physical and chemical properties. Therefore, the Government of Canada developed a tailored approach to address the complexity of information gathering and assessment activities for polymers and solicited comments on the proposed approach between March 19, 2012, and May 18, 2012. A summary of the comments received and of the Government's responses can be found in the Summary of Public Comments received on the Proposed Approach Document for Domestic Substances List Polymers.

The document has since been revised and a final version entitled Approach under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 to address polymers on the Domestic Substances List that were identified as priorities during categorization was released in December 2014. Details of the approach as well as a list of candidate polymers falling within the scope can be found in the document.

Further consultations on additional elements of the approach will occur throughout the assessment process.

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