A new ECHA-EASA report highlights the key aspects of the authorisation process for the aviation industry


The publication clarifies the issues of the interplay between the strict airworthiness requirements and the REACH authorisation process and it provides best practice advice that can also benefit other industry sectors.

Helsinki, 15 April 2014 – The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and the relevant stakeholders of the aviation sector have worked together to facilitate industry's compliance with the strict EU airworthiness standards which may require the use of substances placed in the Authorisation List and requirements of the REACH Regulation.

The results of this collective effort are made available in a joint ECHA and EASA publication that covers the main aspects of authorisation process such as the definition of the uses to apply for, the need for extensive supply chain communication, the analysis of alternatives and the socio-economic analysis. Due to complexity of interactions between the many manufacturing levels and the numerous competitors of this strategic industry sector the report includes best practice for efficient communication in the supply chain.

The report is important for the aviation industry because REACH authorisation is considered as a "mission-critical" process. The reasons are mainly due to the regulatory controls associated with the introduction of alternative chemicals; the industry's dependence on certain substances of very high concern (SVHC), the relatively small volumes of SVHCs in use and the complexity of its supply chain. Answers developed may be applied to other industries as well, though the analysis is based on the specific case of the aviation industry.

Given the regulatory context in which aviation activities operate, their need to apply for authorisation for substances and uses where no suitable alternatives are available is particularly apparent. The publication provides guidance and advice to clarify how the aviation industry can effectively address both the need for airworthiness and meet the REACH authorisation requirements.