The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) is the central agency to implement the EU’s chemicals legislation to protect people and the environment from the hazards of chemicals. It also contributes to a well-functioning internal market and the innovation and competitiveness of the European chemicals industry.
ECHA develops independent scientific and technical opinions and takes binding decisions to ensure that chemicals companies comply with European law. Its committees provide scientific advice to the European Commission, relating to hazards and risks of chemicals, their impact on society and ways to mitigate their risks. ECHA practices transparent decision-making and its independency policy is used to monitor and prevent any conflicts of interest.
The Agency hosts the largest database on chemicals in the world and uses this knowledge to advance the safe use of chemicals. The database is publicly available and free of charge, containing more than 245 000 chemicals. Companies, researchers, industry and consumers can benefit from this data as well as the software formats and tools to use it. https://echa.europa.eu/information-on-chemicals
ECHA plays an important role in reducing chemical pollution in the EU. Together with EU Member States and the European Commission, ECHA ensures safer chemicals use in Europe by improving the available data, disseminating and checking it and proposing risk management measures when needed.
The Agency contributes to sustainability and circular economy. All materials and products are made of chemicals. Better knowledge and regulation of hazardous chemicals makes recycling easier, protects workers, consumers and the environment, and enables industry to innovate, improve product quality and replace hazardous substances with safer ones.
ECHA’s work has a global dimension. The Agency helps to make the import and export of dangerous chemicals more transparent and contributes to limiting the most hazardous pollutants worldwide. This work is part of the United Nations’ worldwide conventions that protect people and the environment from hazardous chemicals.