ECHA Consultation on Nonyl Phenol and Nonyl Phenol Ethoxylate by Nick Boley

The European Chemicals Agency, ECHA, has initiated a consultation regarding the placing on the market of textile clothing, fabric accessories and interior textile articles containing nonylphenol (NP) or nonylphenol ethoxylate ( NPE) that can be washed in water. This was initiated by a request from the Swedish authorities who are seeking a restriction on the use of NP and NPE.

Recent work by the UK Environment Agency has shown that over 90% of articles analysed (underwear cotton) contained NP or NPE and these were mainly imported from outside the EU. Analyses showed that virtually all the NP and NPE were removed in the first two washes. Accordingly, it is estimated that over 150 kg of NP and NPE may be released annually into the UK environment via washing machine effluent. NP is on the list of Priority Hazardous Substances under the EU Water Framework Directive.


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