Today, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development released its report on the Review of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA). The report provides 87 wide ranging recommendations – both in subject matter and in scope – reflecting the nature of the Act itself and its programs.

“If adopted in full, these recommendations could irrevocably undermine the science and risk-based foundation which underpins CEPA 1999 and the Chemicals Management Plan (CMP),” said Bob Masterson, Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) President and CEO. “Doing so is not only overly precautionary, it would also threaten innovation and investment in the chemistry sector.”

As the recognized world leader in the safe management of chemicals, many other jurisdictions are turning to Canada for guidance in shaping their own regimes. For example, just last year, U.S. President Barack Obama signed the Lautenburg Chemical Safety Act for the 21st Century.  That Act closely follows the Canadian model and relies on data, sound science and industry-government co-operation.

Canada is in the process of completing assessments for over 23,000 substances and managing the identified risks associated with those substances. CIAC strongly believes that the CMP is achieving its objectives and is on track for success. No other jurisdiction in the world has even come close to Canada’s record.

The chemistry industry has been and remains a fully engaged and productive partner in the development and delivery of CEPA 1999 and CMP.  We will continue to engage with all stakeholders to realize those areas where the current approach can be improved on.  In doing so, however, CIAC will continue to promote the science and risk-based approach as the foundation for continued success.

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The Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) is the voice of Canada’s $53 billion chemistry industry and represents more than 50 members and partners across the country. Members of CIAC are signatories to Responsible Care® – the Association’s U.N.-recognized sustainability initiative.