Singapore is a Party to the Stockholm Convention (SC) on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)1 and the Rotterdam Convention (RC) on the Prior Informed Consent (PIC) Procedure2. As the Competent Authority (CA) for the implementation of the obligations to the Conventions, the National Environment Agency (NEA) reviews the SC’s and RC’s lists of chemicals of concern, and controls them as Hazardous Substances (HS) under the Environmental Protection and Management Act (EPMA) and EPM (Hazardous Substances) (HS) Regulations. This allows NEA to implement the necessary licensing controls to fulfil Singapore’s obligations as a Party to the Conventions.
2 The SC and RC have identified 11 new chemicals for review. NEA is consulting the public on the proposal to control these chemicals as HS under the EPMA and EPM (HS) Regulations. The consultation period will last for 3 weeks from 5 Mar 2019 to 26 Mar 2019.
Proposed Chemicals for Control
The 9th Conference of Parties (COP-9) for SC and RC, to be held from 28 Apr to 10 May 2019, will be considering the inclusion of these 11 new chemicals for control. Should these chemicals be included, the Parties’ obligations under the SC and RC for their control would have to take effect within 1 year. The tabulation below shows a summary of the chemicals for listing as (a) a POP under the Annexes of the SC or (b) as a chemical subject to PIC procedure under Annex III of the RC. More details on the chemicals are appended in the Annex
|Conventions ||Stockholm Convention (SC) ||Rotterdam Convention (RC) |
|Proposed Chemicals for Control ||Industrial Chemicals |
(i) Pentadecafluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), its salts and PFOA-related compounds
(ii) Perfluorohexane sulfonic acid (PFHxS), its salts and PFHxS – related compounds
|Industrial Chemicals |
(i) Benzidine and its salts
(ii) Paraquat and its salts
|Parties’ Obligations under SC and RC ||(a) Prohibit the production, import, export and use of the chemicals listed in Annex A of SC; |
(b) Restrict the production and use of chemicals listed in Annex B of SC; and
(c) Reduce or eliminate the unintentional releases of chemicals listed in Annex C of SC
|Regulate the international trade of the chemicals using the PIC procedure where the transboundary movement of the listed chemicals in Annex III of RC can only take place with the consent of the receiving country. |
Proposed Regulatory Control
4 In preparation for Singapore’s obligation to the SC and RC when these 11 new chemicals are included in the Annexes of the Conventions, NEA intends to list these chemicals as HS for licensing control under the EPMA and EPM (HS) Regulations. These chemicals have been assessed by the SC and RC to pose environmental and health impacts which warrant controls to be taken for public health reasons.
5 NEA plans to gazette the control of these 11 new chemicals under the EPMA and EPM (HS) Regulations by June 2019. The licensing of the chemicals will take effect 6 months from the date of gazette. Importers, manufacturers and distributors of these chemicals and products containing these chemicals will then be required to apply for a HS licence/permit for the import, export, sale, store and use of the chemicals.
Feedback on the proposed control measures for the 11 chemicals can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org
. The consultation exercise will end on 26 Mar 2019.
7 Respondents are requested to adhere to the following guidelines when providing feedback:
a. Identify yourself as well as the organization you represent (if any) so that NEA may follow up with you to clarify any issue, if necessary.
b. Be clear and concise in your comments.
c. Focus your comments on the proposal and how it can be improved.
d. Substantiate your points with illustrations, examples, data or alternative suggestions.
8 This proposal is released for the purpose of consultation. All relevant comments received during the consultation exercise will be taken into consideration.
1 The Stockholm Convention on POPs is a global treaty to protect human health and the environment from chemicals that persist for long periods of time in the environment, bio-accumulate through the food chain, have the potential for long-range transboundary transport, and have harmful impacts on human health or the environment. Further info and text on the Stockholm Convention on POPs can be found on the website: http://chm.pops.int 2 The Rotterdam Convention on the PIC Procedure aims to promote shared responsibility and cooperative efforts among parties in the international trade of certain hazardous chemicals in order to protect human health and the environment from potential harm and to contribute to their environmentally sound use. Further info and text on the Rotterdam Convention on the PIC Procedure can be found on the website: http://www.pic.int