Update 15 May 2020 see the ECHA consultation on PFAS regulation launched this very week.
With Kathleen Garnett I have co-authored a paper where we scope the ‘essential uses’ approach to product regulation, particularly in chemicals.
Could calls for the stricter regulation of one particular type of chemical herald the introduction of a new (or not) ‘principle’ in international and EU regulatory law, namely that of ‘essential use’ as a precondition for market authorisation?
The concept of ‘essential use’ or ‘non-essential use’ has been referenced in a number of EU policy papers. Kathleen and I focus on Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (‘PFAS’) in chemicals legislation and firstly, map the concept of ‘essential use’ in international and EU law; further, discuss its limited application in the case-law of the European Court of Justice; and, before we conclude, carry out a preliminary investigation as to (if it does not currently exist in EU law), whether it might be so included de lege ferenda.
Happy reading. We are submitting to journal.