Risk management of chemicals

Substitution of hazardous chemicals


As interest in the substitution of harmful chemicals continues to grow in industry, NGOs and the public sector, organizations are seeking guidance on the selection of appropriate methods and tools. OECD is responding to this need. The OECD’s  Joint Meeting of the Chemicals Committee and the Working Party on Chemicals, Pesticides, and Biotechnology established an Ad Hoc Group on Substitution of Harmful Chemicals with the goal of furthering tools and approaches to support decision making for the substitution of chemicals of concern. As part of its work, the Joint Meeting requested that the Ad Hoc Group build on existing work to develop a toolbox to support the evaluation of alternatives when safer substitutes to chemicals of concern are sought.

Current practice of alternatives assessment practice – a meta review

This report is the first output from this work stream. It summarizes the literature on substitution of chemicals of concern (or alternatives assessment, which is the term in use in Northern America), with a focus on the current landscape of substitution practice in OECD member countries. It discusses definitions, principles, frameworks and tools for alternatives assessment, as well as the key drivers and audiences, and it identifies the contribution that OECD can make in this space.


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