EU: Harmful postponement of the revision of the REACh regulation

  October 18, 2023

October 17, 2023, Brussels – The European Commission has decided to postpone the revision of the REACh regulation. The Commission’s work programme for the year 2024, published on October 17, no longer includes this revision. The REACh regulation (acronym for Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals) regulates the management and evaluation of chemical substances in the European Union.

In force since June 1, 2007, it applies to a wide range of chemical substances, including active ingredients in pesticide products. REACH establishes a set of procedures for assessing the dangerousness of chemical substances, and companies are responsible for identifying and managing the risks of the substances they produces. Depending on the risks identified and the potential hazards entailed by the product, restrictive measures may subsequently be adopted. One of the main aims of the regulation is to better protect human health and the environment, and to reduce the frequency with which chemicals are tested on animals.

A key element of the “Zero Pollution” strategy announced by the European Commission as part of the European Green Pact, the REACH regulation was to be the subject of a revision project, already postponed for the first time in October 2022. The ambitious revision project should have enabled the progressive banning, by 2030, of six categories of hazardous chemicals (the “Sick Six”), including perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), persistent pollutants that are potentially carcinogenic.

While the war between Ukraine and Russia justifies this postponement for the European Commission, the opportunism of the agri-food lobby, which is constantly putting pressure on the European authorities, seems to shed more light on this situation, damaging our health and our environment.

Sources : 

Report de la révision du règlement européen « Reach » – Environnement Magazine (

Un plan européen d’interdiction de substances chimiques nocives – Environnement Magazine (