Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive
The European Union (EU) RoHS Directive significantly impacted the electronics industry with the required removal of four heavy metals and two flame retardants - lead, mercury, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls (PBB), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE). All electronic products manufactured or sold in the EU must comply with the RoHS Directive. There are several exemptions for specific applications, however they all have an expiration date. The list of restricted substances will be periodically reviewed and amended if necessary. The Commission reviewed 4 substances identified for priority review and amended the list of restricted substances to include: Bis (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP), Dibutyl phthalate (DBP), and Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP).
IPC was instrumental in advocating for the revised Directive to be scientifically based. As a result, the Commission did not initially implement additional substance restrictions under the revised RoHS Directive. Further, subsequent restrictions are based on sound science and evaluate potential alternatives. IPC will remain engaged in the review process.
A number of exemptions will expire in 2016. Applications to renew these exemptions must be submitted to the EU Commission by January 2015. IPC, in conjunction with an international industry stakeholder group, worked to develop exemption extension applications for the following exemptions: 4(f), 6(a), 6(b), 6(c), 7(a), 7(c)-I, 7(c)-II, 7(c)-IV, 8(b), 13a, 13b, 15, 34, and 37. The final applications can be viewed here by IPC Members Only.