Canada Gets Serious About GHS

A couple of news items out of Canada this last week. First on June 29, 2013, the Department of Health formally requested written comments on a proposal to repeal and replace the Controlled Products Regulations to implement GHS. The request states that the goal of the proposed amendments is to “achieve the Canada-United States Regulatory commitment to align, synchronize implementation of common classification and labeling requirements for workplace hazardous chemicals…”

Anyone wishing to provide comments has until September 15, 2013 to do so. Comments can be directed to the Workplace Hazardous Materials Directorate, Health Canada, 427 Laurier Avenue W, 7th Floor, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1M3, 613-993-9167 (telephone), 613-993-5016 (fax).

This news was followed up by a formal announcement by the Minister of Health, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, on July 5, 2013 stating that the consultation process has begun. Consultation is the forerunner to the publishing of a formal regulatory proposal in Canada Gazette 1.

You can read a description of proposed amendments on Health Canada's Website.

There are some important changes the amendments would push through, including the dropping of the requirement "to revise the SDS every three (3) years in the absence of new information." The reason given is that it is "duplicative of the requirement that an SDS and label be accurate at the time of sale or import."

Stay tuned to MSDSonline for breaking news. To learn more about the expected changes to WHMIS, read the following articles:

GHS Adoption Means Big Changes to Canada’s WHMIS

OSHA and Health Canada Agree to Agree on GHS Alignment