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As you probably know, the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA 1999) requires that every new chemical substance made in Canada or imported from other countries since 1994, be assessed for safety to human health and the environment. However, there are many chemicals in frequent use since long before 1994 that have never been assessed.  Therefore, the Canadian government launched its Chemicals Management Plan (CMP) in 2006, to systematically sort through and then assess the 23,000 or so substances introduced into Canadian life before environmental legislation was in place.

Having categorized all these substances, the Government of Canada has been focussing its recent efforts on those chemicals suspected of having the most dangerous properties.  During the assessment process, and when the assessment of each batch of chemicals is complete, Health Canada seeks input from interested and knowledgeable Canadians concerning strategies to reduce their potential risks to human health and the environment.  Examples of specific substances that are being assessed right now are phthalates, certain organic flame retardants, and substances containing Boron or Selenium.

For more detailed information about the chemicals management process and timelines, please go to www.chemicalsubstances.gc.ca

If you would like to be part of this process, please join the CNHHE

For the Primer on Scientific Risk Assessment at Health Canada you can go here