The Enhesa Helpline Support Service continues to experience increased popularity with existing and new Enhesa clients. The Enhesa Helpline provides clients with a pre-paid number of consulting hours, to provide a rapid response to address specific EHS regulatory questions. Enhesa
Helpline is able to respond quickly to both simple and complex questions, in a single or in multiple jurisdictions at a very reasonable price.
For example, Enhesa was recently asked to investigate the enforcement methods of RoHS in all 27 EU Member States. We found that even if each Member State can choose its method of enforcement, the national authorities responsible for enforcement and the budget dedicated to this issue, there is some coordination of their actions via the “European RoHS Enforcement Network”.
The network consists of representatives from each national enforcement authority responsible for RoHS. One task for this network is to manage joint projects where the countries focus on one type of product chosen annually. The products chosen for the joint projects have so far been: radio controlled toys (2008), Christmas lightning (2008), computers (2009) and cheap electrical toys (2010).
Moreover, the network has issued RoHS enforcement guidelines. The guidelines set out two enforcement models; 1) verification through technical documentation, and 2) physical inspections.
When using the first model, verification through technical documentation, the authorities may typically review: contact information, company information, company approach to compliance and overview of the data quality system of the producer. The United Kingdom is an example of a Member State which tends to use this enforcement method.
The second model, physical Inspections, is most commonly performed by using a screening tool, the energy dispersive x -ray fluorescence (ED-XRF) analysis. However, as this technique has a potential to provide false non-compliance results, it is usually followed up by sampling in an accredited laboratory (often applying standard EN 62321). The Netherlands and Belgium are examples of Member States where this model is
Member States can use the following criteria for the selection of products to undergo a compliance check; market intelligence, random selection, products known to contain materials of high concern, high volume products, short life products, consumer products unlikely to be recycled, notification of concern from external parties, notification of concern from other Member States.
There is currently an EU-wide assessment of RoHS enforcement and a report on this is expected at the end of 2011.
Other examples of questions that the Enhesa Helpline Support Service has recently answered are:
- Are there any mandatory requirements to provide either full-time or part-time EHS resources based on the size of the employee head count in Indonesia and Malaysia?
- Do we need a permit to regroup the waste generated by our various sites in Morocco prior to sending them to the treatment plant?
- We rent space in a building located in Italy and use it as workplace. There is no fire alarm system and the landlord does not conduct building-wide fire drills.
- Who is responsible for complying with these obligations, us as employer and tenant, or the building’s landlord?
- Canada’s CEPA 1999 contains provisions related to Significant New Activities (SNAc). The authorities publish SNAc Notices in the Canada Gazette for chemicals for which SNAcs have been established (tracked by Enhesa). Is there a corresponding regulation or guidelines for SNAc that describes the process/requirements for implementing SNAcs for existing and new substances? Or are individuals expected to implement SNAc requirements based only on the information provided in a substance’s SNAc Notice?