Technical report 125

Broader regulatory perspectives on regulatory protection goals

Here a broader range of regulatory instruments than those previously considered for prospective ERA prior to chemical product registration and retrospective assessment under the Water Framework Directive (Hommen et al, 2010) are reviewed. These broader instruments provide a ‘catch-all’ or environmental ‘safety net’ covering the life-cycle of chemicals from manufacture to use and disposal. They include environmental and nature conservation legislation and International Conventions, many of which require retrospective environmental surveillance, monitoring and impact assessment, instead of, or in addition to prospective risk assessment (Appendix C Tables C1.1 to C1.3, Figure 3.1). The complementary use of retrospective and prospective approaches is recognised as important for improving ERA (Ragas, 2011; Boxall et al, 2012; SCHER/SCENIHR/SCCS, 2012). The Task Force has identified existing examples of specific protection goals (SPGs) from consolidated regulatory texts and guidance documents, including historical and recent amendments, covering a wide range of ecological entities, from individual organisms to entire habitats or ecosystems, and key attributes reflecting ecosystem health (Section 3.3.1).