EDG, THE ASSOCIATION
The European Domestic Glass industry is represented by EDG, European Domestic Glass Committee, under the umbrella of the CPIV, Chambre Permanente des Industries du Verre. At international level, EDG is also member of the International Crystal Federation (ICF). EDG is member of the Executive Committee of CPIV.EDG is also member of the CPIV Environment Task Force, contributes actively to the different Working Groups and co-chairs the REACH working Group. EDG has represented its members faithfully on European regulatory and legislative affairs, with currently no dedicated staff, but via the contribution of its...
EDG, THE ASSOCIATION
The European Domestic Glass industry is represented by EDG, European Domestic Glass Committee, under the umbrella of the CPIV, Chambre Permanente des Industries du Verre. At international level, EDG is also member of the International Crystal Federation (ICF). EDG is member of the Executive Committee of CPIV.EDG is also member of the CPIV Environment Task Force, contributes actively to the different Working Groups and co-chairs the REACH working Group. EDG has represented its members faithfully on European regulatory and legislative affairs, with currently no dedicated staff, but via the contribution of its members, and through its Technical Committee. Many notable successes have been obtained, compared to the resources involved. The purpose of this paper is to outline the main results on the three main recent issues, namely the implementation of the REACH BREF revision and its integration in IED, and the new rules for CO2 allocation in ETS.
REGISTRATION, EVALUATION AND AUTHORIZATION OF CHEMICALS (REACH)
This legislation is aimed at registering and allowing the use of all chemical substances that are currently used in large quantities within the EU. It is estimated that 30,000 substances are involved: this mammoth legislation replaces all previous directives on control of chemicals. The two main issues for the glass industry in the implementation of REACH are the status of glass and the open use of raw materials.
EDG has the responsibility of co-chairing the REACH Working Group of CPIV. EDG has played a major role in the lobbying actions that resulted in the clarification of the status of glass. So, it is now defined that glass is classified as an UVCB substance (a substance of unknown or variable composition, complex reaction products or biological materials) and not a preparation. This simplified the information that we have to give to our customers. The glassware we produce is 100 per cent made of glass, and no further explanations are needed. Our most important result is the exemption from the registration requirement obtained under certain conditions laid down in Annex V (11) REACH. Unless glass, and ceramic frits meet the criteria for classification as dangerous according to Directive 67/548/EEC, and provided that they do not contain constituents meeting the criteria as dangerous in accordance with Directive 67/548/EEC present in concentrations above the lowest of the applicable concentration limits set out in Directive 1999/45/EC or concentration limit set out in Annex1 to Directive 67/548/EEC, unless conclusive scientific experimental data show that these constituents are not available throughout the life-cycle of the substance and those data have been ascertained to be adequate and reliable. In practice, this means that mostof the common formulations are directly covered. For others, including borosilicate, lead crystal, crystal and coloured glasses, EDG has worked closely with qualified experts under the umbrella of CPIV o define a practical methodology. The technical part has been developed within the Technical Committee TC13 “environment” of the International Commission on Glass. Real cases for tableware glasses have been investigated. The results have been used as the basisthe CPIV dossier, submitted to ECHA and to all national authorities. It is now the responsibility of each glass manufacturer to gather the relevant scientific information for each specific exemption file. EDG has also contributed to review the impact of REACH on the availability of the raw materials used in the domestic glass industry. For some important cases, such as borates or several metal oxides,a close partnership with the different consortia suppliers has been developed. Several registration dossiers have been reviewed and, when needed, a negotiation have been undertaken to take into consideration the conditions of use occurring in the domestic glass industry. This is important to allow the Domestic Glass industry easy access to raw materials. More generally, a generic understanding of the status of the raw materials has been developed, that all raw materials are intermediates. According to the article 2(8b) of the REACH regulation, isolated intermediates are not subject to authorization (Title VII). Therefore, even if an intermediate is on the candidate list of substances of very high concern (SVHC) and is going to be prioritized, its use as an intermediate will not be subject to authorization. This interpretation has not been accepted by ECHA for the useof As2O3 as refining agents. This is still object of debate.
EMISSION TRADING SCHEME
The Kyoto Protocol obliges the industrialized countries which have ratified it to reduce their global emissions by 20 per cent between 2012 and 2016. EDG has participated fully on various committees concerned with the implementation of the scheme, flexible mechanisms, post-2012, the National Allocation Plans (NAPs), etc. EDG has initiated independent studies of the possible impact of the regulation on the competitiveness, partly with FEVE (European Container Glass Federation), and under the umbrella of CPIV. This clearly shows that domestic glass industry is a “sector submitted to the risk of Carbon leakage”. This has been officially acknowledged by the Commission and will lead to obtain free CO2 allocation in the post 2012 allocation scheme. EDG has also carefully studied the options for product benchmarking. It appears that, due to the size and the diversity of products range and of processes used, the best option for domestic glass is to be submitted fuel benchmarking. EDG has obtained from the Commission that the specificities of domestic glass should be taken into consideration in the wider range of hollow glass. If as initially thought, the same allocation rule should be applied to domestic glass and to bottles and jars, it should have result in a potential “loss” of allocation of approximately 500 kt of CO2, i.e. equivalent to EUR 15 million.
REVISION OF GLASS BREF (BEST AVAILABLE TECHNIQUES REFERENCE DOCUMENT)
The Commission achieved the revision of the Glass BREF recently in March 2011, with the issuing of the new document. EDG has been involved in the numerous steps of this procedure. The specificities of domestic glass has been explained and taken into consideration in the final document. Contrary to container and flat glass, there are no split views for domestic glass. One of the most disputed issue has been the choice of the BAT, Best Available Techniques and the Associated Emissions for Nitrogen Oxides, NOx. A simplified presentation of the final result can be seen in the following table (for the general case).
ROHS – DIRECTIVE 2002/95 ON THE RESTRICTION OF HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES IN ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT
Through the intensive efforts of the CPIV, the International Crystal Federation and its members, the Commission agreed to grant an exemption for lead bound in crystal glasses (as defined in Directive 69/493). Without this exemption it would have become impossible to further use leaded glasses in electrical and electronic equipment like crystal chandeliers, watches etc. Thanks to constant work on this, the exemption was also acknowledged in the recent recast of the RoHS Directive. Furthermore, it could be avoided that antimony, a highly important substance in the production process of crystals, would be listed on a so called “candidate list” for future restriction in electrical and electronic products.
OTHER ISSUES AND ACTIVITIES PURSUED REPRESENTING THE INDUSTRY
Industry position on origin marking of products made outside of the EU: a large debate has started within the EU on Country of origin marking; as we see it this is an extremely important issue to protect both consumers who have the right to know what is the origin of the products they want to but and, at the same time, those companies that – well established and rooted within the EU 27 – respect the rules and regulations and provide working places to their workers in line with them; all this at a cost which is, obviously far superior than any place where the work is not safeguarded and the environment neglected. The same goes for those European companies that buy outside the EU at cheap price and the reimport of those goods with small variances and mark them as European: see the enclosed document in conjunction with other associations. Industry position on revision of MERCOSUR Free Trade Agreement: very often in South America and especially during WTO rounds or bilateral negotiations, Countries are obliged to lower their import duties on category 7013, which represents tableware. In conjunction with this action, however, they introduce hidden taxes (luxury taxes, VAT, special taxes) to make up with what they have lost or in order to protect local production. We are in constant touch with DG Enterprise to have these disadvantages corrected and duties lowered only when this happens on both sides. The same action has taken place with India. Industry position on lead crystal in Canada: we keep in touch with Health Canada to update them on the developments that take place within our industry; this constant flow of information has allowed them to understand the difference of considering the lead content – needed to have a brilliant and a beautiful product - versus the lead leaching which the industry has driven to negligible levels in the course of the years. ISO IWA: in the course of common work carried out in two and half years, a group of leading companies within the ICF has worked together to have recognized standard on ‘better glass’ that was not based on chemical composition: in a context of deep and irreversible change in the domestic glass market since the 90s, due to changes in life style and demographic and cultural evolutions, clarity has a growing interest and importance for many applications in tableware, luminaries, jewellery or giftware. No International Standard was found in a literature search on the definition of the quality of glass used for domestic application, and based on a physical parameter linked to properties perceived by consumers. Following the consultation of ISO TMB members on the project proposed by Institut du Verre, mandated by ICF and EDG, the ISO workshop on glass clarity has been created. The aim of this workshop has been to answer the technical community need for a global reference document that will allow globally active companies to have mutual understanding on quality demands concerning the quality of clear glassware:
• according to perception of the consumer;
• easy to communicate to the market; and
• in line with sustainable development.
Food and Drug Administration, USA: every year we have at least one meeting with the officials of the FDA, which serves two purposes: keep them aware and updated on the evolutions of the industry and monitor the products available to the consumer in the marketplace. This last is extremely important to determine the compliance of these products to the laws and regulationsin place and make sure that the FDA is made aware of those products/companies that do not respect those rules. Last in time their attention has been focused on Barium: considering that the vast majority of crystal glass produced in the world is based on this element, a first round of analysis has been started and comparative data offered.