On October 13, 2018 Environment Canada published a notice of intent to amend the Prohibition of Certain Toxic Substances Regulations, 2012.
Several chemicals currently on Schedule 1 of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999 (CEPA) are being considered for amendments that would further restrict their manufacture, use, sale, and offer for sale and import. Chemicals under consideration include two flame retardants (hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs)), as well as three oil and water repellants (perfluorooctane sulfonate and its salts and precursors (PFOS), perfluorooctanoic acid and its salts and precursors (PFOA), and long-chain perfluorocarboxylic acids and their salts and precursors (LC-PFCAs)).
Two additional flame retardants (dechlorane plus (DP) and decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE)) which are not currently restricted are also under consideration. If the final screening assessment reports conclude that DP and DBDPE are toxic under section 64 of CEPA, amendments to the regulations to prohibit these substances will be initiated.
The primary motivation for these changes is to encourage the recovery of Canada’s endangered whales species. Chemical contaminants are a principle threat to the endangered Southern Resident Killer Whale and the Saint Lawrence Estuary Beluga.
Comments from interested parties will be accepted until November 12, 2018. A consultation document outlining the proposed amendments will be released in the fall of 2018. The proposed amendments will be published in the Canada Gazette, Part I in the winter of 2019-2020.