CHCS  Chemical Hazards Communication Society  Promoting the awareness of chemical hazards & improvements in their identification & communication


Chemical Hazards Legislation - GB


In Great Britain, the major areas of legislation that impact on the provision of Chemical Hazards information are the EU’s directly acting REACH Regulation 1907/2006, the directly acting Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 on classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures, and amending Directive 67/548/EEC and Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 (in short CLP), and the Chemical (Hazard Information and Packaging for Supply) Regulations 2009 (SI 2009 No 716) (CHIP4 or just CHIP).

CHIP4 revoked and remade, from 6th April 2009, the former CHIP 3 which had implemented the system of classification, packaging and labelling of the European Union’s (EU’s) 67/458/EEC Dangerous Substances Directive (DSD) and 1999/45/EC Dangerous Preparations Directive (DPD). However CHIP4 goes further and recognises, and provides for enforcement for CLP, which can be applied as an alternative to compliance with the CHIP classification and labelling system.

A comprehensive update history and a Table of Contents for the Regulation (EC) 1272/2008 are available to CHCS Members in the "Members Pages" section of this website.


Those involved with the transport of chemicals and some other goods need to be aware of the various international transport regulations, ADR (Road), RID (Rail), IMDG Code (Sea), and ICAO Technical Instructions/IATA (Air).

The international codes are enforced and made applicable to domestic transport by Carriage of Dangerous Goods and Use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2009 (SI 2009 No 1348) (known in short as CDG 2009), by the Merchant Shipping (Dangerous Goods and Marine Pollutants) Regulations 1997 (SI 1997 No 2367, as modified from time to time by a Merchant Shipping Notice to apply the latest edition of the IMDG Code), and the Air Navigation Dangerous Goods Regulations 2002 (SI 2002 No 2786, as amended from time to time to apply the latest edition of the ICAO TIs).

The supply and carriage regulations are totally separate pieces of legislation but there is some interaction between them – Section 14 of the SDS required by REACH needs for example needs information about the carriage classification. Whilst hazard criteria can differ between the two sets of legislation, these differences are being gradually reduces under the influence of GHS , see below.


When exporting outside the EU, of the presence of local regulations concerning such matters as safety data sheets and local chemical inventories and the obligations placed on exporters by international agreements such as those implemented by the requirements of Regulation (EU) No 649/2012, which deals with the export of chemicals to countries outside the EC, and the Chemical Weapons convention, need to be observed

Other GB Legislation

There is also interaction between the supply regulations and other legislation; an example is the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (SI 2002 No 2677 as amended – COSHH) where the safety data sheet is the primary source of information when carrying out a workplace risk assessment where chemicals are involved.

Globally Harmonised System (GHS)

The Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS), has been the subject of more than a decade of work; its aim is to provide a framework to bring together the various national and regional hazard communication systems which control the supply of hazardous chemicals in much the same way that the ‘Orange Book’ offers a global framework for the transport of dangerous goods.

The purpose of GHS is to provide a single, globally harmonized system to address classification of chemicals, labels, and safety data sheets. The first edition of GHS was published in July 2003 as the ‘Purple Book’. The files comprising the latest version of the Purple Book can be downloaded from the UNECE website. The GHS is ‘implemented’ for supply in the EU via the CPL, see above, and for transport is being ‘implemented’ via changes to the UN Orange Book, and then in turn via ADR, IMDG Code etc.

(EC) CLP Regulation

The European Union (EU) is harmonising its provisions with the GHS. For supply this is via a new directly acting Regulation, made under the European Community (EC) Treaty’s Article 95.

This Regulation is titled "REGULATION (EC) No 1272/2008 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 16 December 2008 on classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures, amending and repealing Directives 67/548/EEC and 1999/45/EC, and amending Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006".

The Regulation was originally published in the Official Journal on 31st December 2008. The text can be found on the EU website. It has since been adapted to technical progress, details of which can be found on the European Commission CLP website pages.

A useful Table of Contents for the Regulation (EC) 1272/2008 is available to CHCS Members in the "Members Pages" section of this website.

Chemical Hazards Communication Society

The Chemical Hazards Communication Society provides a number of services to assist those who need to stay up-to-date with this diversity of national and international regulations. CHCS organises training courses for Safety Data Sheet writers, symposia and webinars on a broad range of chemical hazard related topics and provides an e-mail Forum where information can be exchanged and questions asked and answered.


ECHA publishes draft CoRAP for 2020-2022
ECHA has announced a draft plan incorporating 74 substances proposed for evaluation by Member States (MS) during 2020-2022, under the Community rolling action plan (CoRAP).  CHCS members can read more on the CHCS News Briefings  page. [Posted on 12 November 2019]

CHCS October 2019 Newsletter Now Published

Our October 2019 Newsletter is now available, which includes an in-depth, special report titled "Titanium Dioxide - Stakeholders Demand An Impact Assessment". See our CHCS Newsletters page for more details [Posted on 20 October 2019]

GHS Revision 8
Globally Harmonised System (GHS) Revision 8 has been published and is available online in both English and French. CHCS members can read more on the CHCS News Briefings  page. [Posted on 22 October 2019]

Model Regulations, 21st Revised Edition The United Nations Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, Model Regulations, 21st Revised edition is now available in English and French. CHCS Members can read more on the page. CHCS News Briefings  [Posted on 21 October 2019]

IATA Publishes Significant Changes To The 61st Edition Of The Dangerous Goods Regulations  

CHCS Members can read more on the CHCS News Briefings page.   [Posted on 20 October 2019]

CHCS & SCHC Sign New MoU
We are delighted to have signed a new MoU with the Society for Chemical Hazard Communication, outlining the relationship between both Societies and the benefits to members of both. For more information visit our SCHC web page [Posted on 18 October 2019]

CHCS AGM & Annual Lectures - Celebrating 25 Years of CHCS
We are delighted to publish our draft program for the event, including speakers and presentation titles. 

There is still plenty of time to register for the event, which takes place on 20 November at Hilton Hotel, NEC, Birmingham. Free of charge for CHCS members. 

To find out more, download the flier or reserve your place please visit the CHCS 25th AGM event page [Posted on 8 October 2019]

Draft amendment to REACH Annex II
A consultation has been opened on the draft amendment to Annex II of REACH. The draft has also been notified to the World Trade Organisation – G/TBT/N/EU/680.  

CHCS Members can read more on the CHCS News Briefings page.  [Posted on 1 October 2019]

Webinar Series: "Introduction to Chemical Management in Latin America"
Our colleagues in the US-based Society for Chemical Hazard Communication (SCHC), have developed a series of webinars, each covering a different country. CHCS members can register at SCHC-member prices. For more details, see our SCHC web page.  
[Posted on 25 September 2019]

Endocrine Disruptors - 1st CHCS Video

We have produced our first video for members: "Endocrine Disruptors", which is available to members free-of-charge.

This introductory video explains the various components of the human endocrine system and how they interact, to help understand the mechanisms of endocrine disruptors on human systems.

The video is just over 10 minutes long.

To register for access to the video, please visit our video registration page: Endocrine Disruptors Video Registration.

[Posted on 1 July 2019]

News Briefings Summary
  • 30 September 2019
    Poison Centre First Deadline To Be Postponed

  • 23 September 2019
    Updated advice for UK-based companies intending to export chemicals listed in the Prior Informed Consent (PIC) Regulation to EU countries in the period immediately following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU

  • 28 August 2019
    14th ATP To CLP: Outcomes For TiO2, Cobalt & DPTA

  • 22 July 2019
    Draft Amendment To "Poison Centre" Regulations

  • 22 July 2019
    Possible Annex VIII to CLP Extension?

  • 29 June 2019
    Workability Issues: Notification to Poison Centres

  • 24 June 2019
    Eurotunnel publishes 2019 guidance

  • 24 April 2019
    HSE Consultation on revision of Workplace Exposure Limits (WELs) for a range of carcinogens

  • 28 March 2019
    Poison Centre Guidance Document Published

  • 22 March 2019
    Poison Centre Guidance Document Published

  • 23 January 2019
    Links To Guidance & Legislation Recently Laid Before Parliament

  • 23 January 2019
    RPA Seeks Input From Companies In Chemicals Supply Chain To Assess Impacts Of Brexit

  • 11 January 2019
    Preparing For A Potential 'No-Deal' Brexit

    CHCS Members can read these News items, and older posts, on the CHCS News Briefings page.

    9  July 2018 - CHCS Needs Your Help!

    CHCS has a number of vacancies on our committees and are looking for volunteers to fill them. For more information please see: CHCS Vacancies.

    Next 3 CHCS Training Courses:

    For a full list of our CHCS Training Courses, please visit our Training page. 



    CHCS Membership is open to any person with an interest in chemical hazard communications. You can join by completing the simple on-line form at Join CHCS. Membership is currently £85.00 (+ £17.00 VAT where applicable; a total of £102.00). 

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