Are YOU Ready for GHS?
With the official announcement from OSHA of the implementation of GHS into the current Hazard Communication Standard many organizations are struggling to understand the complexities of these new regulations and how they will affect their organization. MSDSs are turning into SDSs, pictograms will be required on labels, chemicals will need to be classified and many other changes are in store. These modifications will require all employers in the US to make fundamental alterations to the workplace while requiring new training for employees.
The Globally Harmonized Classification System (GHS) provides standards for classifying chemicals to create smooth-flowing and health and environmentally conscious international trade. In the “Purple Book”, the details needed to use the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals is comprehensively outlined. The full five hundred and fifty-five (555) pages of this text are online, given by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE):
At Safetec, we recognize that busy environmental professionals are being asked to do more with fewer resources. Not everyone has time to read this large, albeit useful compilation and quickly glean the applications that are relevant to their particular industry. For this reason, we are providing you with this quick, snapshot view of the GHS document, so that you can more easily identify the points of the “Purple Book” that are most relevant to you and your business.
WHAT IS THE GHS?
The GHS is an international plan that will make how we classify, label and communicate chemical hazards easier across the board. Harmonized means standardized, so that your consumers in Thailand will understand the same information about your chemicals and products as those in Germany, with less confusion and more safety.
The main ways that your present system of chemical risk management will change includes the following areas:
1. How chemicals are classified
2. How chemicals are labeled
3. How mixtures of chemicals are classified
4. How mixtures of chemicals are labeled
5. Material Safety Data Sheets
6. Hazard Communication Diagrams
Aligning chemicals labeling with global rules involves major efforts
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) began the Herculean task of aligning the U.S."s Hazardous Communication Standard (HCS) with the United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) in September 2009. GHS provides harmonized criteria for classifying chemicals according to their health and physical hazards, and specifies hazard communication elements for labeling and creating safety data sheets (SDS). The HCS is the core federal rule intended to...
Enhesa flash - global ehs compliance assurance
Regulating endocrine disrupting chemicalsA success story? Are you aware of which substances are classified as endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDC)? Do you carry out any operations involving EDC? These are the types of questions that are being considered by many companies in light of significant consumer, government and industry concern for EDC. In order to further delve into this topic, several companies and organizations attended an Enhesa webinar on EDC on the 27 January or 2 February 2010. What this webinar...
Legal lookout: OSHA revises haz-com standard
Chemical classification, labeling and training standards look to change under a recent OSHA proposal to bring U.S. regs in line with global standards. On Sept. 30, 2009, OSHA proposed revisions to the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to align it with the United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). GHS/HCS alignment The system provides harmonized criteria for classifying chemicals according to their health and physical hazards, and specifies hazard communication...
The First Step – US Department of Labor issues GHS notice of proposed rulemaking
On September 30, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) of the Department of Labor published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that starts the long process of introducing the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) into North America.This Notice (Docket No. OSHA-H022K-2006-0062) proposes to modify OSHA’s current Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) to conform with the system for classification, labeling and safety data sheets proposed by the United Nations. The Globally Harmonized System, found in...
Hazardous chemicals and proper storage solutions
Many acceptable categorical storage schemes have been proposed and used by laboratories in academic, industrial, government and medical institutions. The common features uniting all these plans is the separation of incompatible materials. The differences in these various storage schemes arises in the number of groups that should be established for segregation purposes. The ten most commonly cited groups are flammables, oxidants, reducers, concentrated acids, concentrated bases, water reactives, extreme toxics,...
The EPA’s Toxic Substances Control Act: What you must know
Does the nanoscale substance you are producing or using require approval under the U.S. Environmental ProtectionAgency’s (EPA) Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)? It does if it’s new. But what exactly is “new?” Nanotechnology innovators face challenges in commercializing their products-and pre-manufacture notification(PMN) requirements under the TSCA, the federal law governing chemical substances, is one of them. The EPAconsiders nanoscale materials that meet the TSCA definition of “chemical substance” to be...
How Will GHS Affect You?
Regulatory compliance is a major concern for all of us and this is an especially revolutionary time in terms of environmental health and safety compliance. The adoption of the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) is the hot topic of discussion, both domestically and internationally. SiteHawk recently attended the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) hosted teleconference discussing the United State’s role in this adoption process. Jennifer Silk with OSHA and Mary Frances Lowe with the EPA participated in the...
Getting to Harmonization
On Sept. 12, 2006, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) for the implementation of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). The agency also made available a Guide to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals, which is available at www.osha.gov/dsg/hazcom/GHSGuideOct05.pdf. On Oct. 18, 2006, EPA convened a public meeting to discuss the GHS and pesticide labeling...
Purpose and value of safety and health audits
Untitled Document Purpose and value of safety and health audits Introduction/Overview The word `audit` puts many people off because it makes them think of problems with the IRS. But audits are actually organized examinations of how something measures up to standards. Often they`re financial, as with tax returns. Another example is corporate financial reports, which are audited by outside accounting firms. You can audit anything that has set standards, not just numbers. One non-financial...
The Volatile Issue of Reactive Chemicals
Regulation of “reactive” chemicals -- chemicals that become unstable under certain conditions -- has been the subject of debate for years. Underlying the debate, and perhaps fueling it, is the fact that reactive chemicals are involved in many accidents. According to the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board’s (CSB’s) 2002 report addressing reactive chemicals, entitled “Hazard Investigation: Improving Reactive Hazard Management” (referred to here as the “CSB Reactives Report”),1 there have been 167...
Officials Reduce Chlorine Hazard After EIS Exercise Reveals Potential Danger to Ft. Lewis` Neighbors
Untitled Document The Challenge: Recently, the LEPC used EIS to conduct an exercise involving an H20 treatment plant located near residential housing. Prior to the exercise, the plant used gaseous chlorine which it stored in 12 one-ton cylinders and two wells (150 LB bottles). However, much to the LEPC officials` dismay, the spill exercise showed how a plume could extend into the residential housing area and envelope a child care center located nearby. As a result, the...
24 Hour Numbers - Why do you need one?
Untitled Document Labelling and placarding requirements for chemicals are intended to communicate basic information about the hazards of the products they contain. However, for an incident to be dealt with as safely and efficiently as possible, the emergency services, and the fire service in particular, will usually need to obtain more detailed information about the product from the supplier. This technical note discusses current and forthcoming legal requirements and industry best practice on the...
Standing on the MACT Floor
ABSTRACT Three MACT standards have impacted manufacturing operations at the Boeing Philadelphia site. These standards apply to Aerospace Manufacturing and Rework, Halogenated Solvent Cleaning, and Chromium Anodizing. In order to meet the requirements imposed by the standards, qualifications programs were established and conducted by the Materials and Process Engineering group to approve several candidate compliant materials and processes. Engineering specifications were revised to include qualified alternativ...
Cleaner Production in a Czech Chemical Company
Overview Bochemie Bohumín Ltd. is the parent company of the Bochemie Group. Since it was founded, it has worked to meet health, safety and environmental requirements: for example by adhering to the chemical industry`s Responsible Care programme. One of the most important steps it has taken so far to improve its environmental performance has been to introduce Cleaner Production (CP) in its chloramine production plant. Support from CP experts was available to the company through a European Union PHARE project....
5 Questions To Ask Before Choosing An Electronic MSDS Management System
MSDS Management is a real pain in the neck, to put it one way. If you secretly know you`re not 100% in compliance, you`re not alone. OSHA studies show that only around 70% of a company`s hazardous chemical inventory has accurate MSDS`s available. But what can you do? Electronic MSDS management is being adopted with increasing frequency. After all, anything has to be better than trying to keep binders of ratty MSDS pages up to date and in some reasonable order. Cumbersome, internally managed paper-based systems,...
Biomedical Waste in Indian Context
Hospitals generate waste which is chemically hazardous, infectious and often radioactive. Such waste because of inappropriate disposal/treatment strategies contributes to serious health hazards in the community. The main concern of infectious hospital waste is the transmission of HIV and infectious hepatitis viruses. As regulatory measures, the Bureau of Indian Standards, New Delhi has issued guidelines for the management of Solid Wastes-Hospitals 1989. The Ministry of Environment and Forests has also issued...
Safety Training for an Interactive World
Training is often a hardship for many safety managers. If it is not scheduling conflicts with the trainers, worker illnesses or other untimely and unforeseen situations, often it`s training for a multi-language workforce... and let`s not forget that costs are always an issue. Company mergers and acquisitions can cause training to be swept `under the carpet` as well. And whatever the environment, it always seems there is less time to train employees and fewer resources available to do it with. We live and work...
Where I live, in eastern, northern, southeastern Pennsylvania (you figure it out), nights are beginning to chill. I`ve noticed this for two reasons. First, the temperature is dipping below 50. Second, insects have begun finding their way inside the house. We capture most of the little buggers and release them but sooner or later someone reaches for a pesticide. We`ve already dealt with fleas on my son`s cat who recently moved home with him. Now, let`s understand something. Pesticide is a general term for more...
Recycling in India - Environmental and Technological Imperatives
Abstract India is the world`s largest recycler of plastics and metal wastes averaging a recycling rate of nearly 70%. Recycling is driven both by the markets for reprocessed goods and the socio-economic conditions. The recycling markets for both metals and plastics, growing at around 12-15% yearly, is governed more by individual initiatives than by legislative and consumer pressure groups prevalent in the western countries. While markets for reprocessed goods have doubled in the last decade, the local supply of...
Compilation of EU Dioxin Exposure and Health Data
Introduction There is considerable public, scientific and regulatory concern over the possible adverse health effects of chronic exposure to trace levels of persistent organic pollutants. The class of compounds made up of the polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDD) and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDF), often collectively known as dioxins, has received widespread attention and attracted a great deal of research, following the accidental release of the most toxic of these (2,3,7,8 TCDD) at Seveso in 1976. Diox...
Proper Monitoring Essential to Reducing ‘Fugitive Emissions` Under Leak Detection and Repair ...
The Clean Air Act requires refineries to develop and implement a Leak Detection and Repair (LDAR) program to control fugitive emissions. Fugitive emissions occur from valves, pumps, compressors, pressure relief valves, flanges, connectors and other piping components. Comparison monitoring conducted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency`s (EPA) National Enforcement Investigation Center (NEIC) shows that the number of leaking valves and components is up to 10 times greater than had been reported by certain...
Elemental Chlorine-Free (ECF): Pollution Prevention for the Pulp and Paper Industry
Imagine being in charge of a chemical company. One day a fire breaks out, and an employee, designated as a first responder, is killed fighting the blaze. Then OSHA investigators discover that the man died primarily because both his training and his equipment were inadequate. This scenario is why CPL 2-2.59A should put anyone who runs a HAZMAT facility into a state of introspection. These employers need to ask themselves: `When was the last time that our Emergency Response Plan was brought up to date? Do our...
Environmental Compliance and Management Benefits
Many companies are subject to environmental regulations without realizing it. In general, any business, big or small, commercial or industrial, which emits vapors or dust into the air, discharges process waste water into a sewer or on the ground, or generates a solid waste for disposal may be subject to environmental regulations. If a business uses a great many chemicals, or volumes of chemical, or has a file of material safety data sheet (MSDSs), then the company may be susceptible to reporting requirements. In...
Environmental-Rating: Deutsche Telekom and Nippon Tel. & Tel. Lead the Way
Deutsche Telekom and NTT Stand Out in the First Environmental Check of the Telecommunications Industry Deutsche Telekom AG and Nippon Telegraph & Telephone (NTT) are both first in an independent Environmental-Rating of 16 telecommunication companies from eleven countries carried out by the Munich-based rating agency ökom. Both companies received the grade C+ and therefore stood out against the industry average of D+. Telekom Italia Mobile and the Dutch Royal KPN were the tail-lights, both receiving a D-. The...
Introduction The utilization of fungal biodegradation involves the controlled usage of these specially cultivated fungi to treat contaminants. White Rot Fungus White rot fungus has been reported to degrade a wide variety of organopollutants because of its lignin-degrading or wood-rotting enzymes. Two different treatment configurations have been tested for white rot fungus, in situ and bioreactor. An aerobic system using moisturized air on wood chips is used in a reactor for biodegradation. A reactor was used...
Comparative Risk Assessment
` Comparative risk assessment provides a systematic way to compare environmental problems that pose different types and degrees of health risk. It combines information on the inherent hazards of pollutants, exposure levels and population characteristics to predict the resulting health effects. Using data from available sources, rapid, inexpensive comparative risk assessments can identify the most significant health problems. Together with consideration of costs, technical feasibility and other factors, the...
A Workplace using Pesticide that contains Chlorpyrifos: Hazardous Substances Case Study
The hazardous substances compliance standard was previously the Regulation Part 27 -Hazardous Substances and the advisory standard was previously the Code of Practice for the Management of Hazardous Substances at Work. Your task as an employer is to assess the risk of chemical exposure and if necessary, to take steps to control it, in line with the Hazardous Substances Compliance Standard. Download the full document in pdf format (25 Kb)
Hazardous Waste Identification Studies
This is a final report of the study on spent solvents under taken as a result of a consent decree between the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The study discusses the wastes associated with the use of the materials as solvents, the toxicity of the wastes, and the management practices for the wastes. The chemicals included in this study are diethylamine, aniline, ethylene oxide, allyl chloride, 1,4-dioxane, 1,1-dichloroethylene, and bromoform. In addition, this...