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Les véritables coûts de REACH

image of Les véritables coûts de REACH

The proposed new chemicals policy of the European Community, REACH, is an important new development in environmental protection. Rather than waiting for government or independent researchers to determine that chemicals are hazardous, it will make manufacturers, importers, and professional users of chemicals responsible for the safe use. There is little doubt that REACH will give health and environmental benefits, but there has been little agreement about the resulting costs: -Will European manufacturers be crushed by the economic burden of chemicals regulation, as some industry sources have suggested? -Or, as projected in some public sector studies, will there be a minor cost impact, well within the ability of industry and worth the price? This report offers a new look at these costs. Frank Ackerman and Rachel Massey compare the current EC legislation on chemicals, the European Commission’s proposal and an alternative proposal addressing previous versions of REACH. The authors make a bottom-up calculation of the expected registration and testing costs under REACH and provide a new analysis of the indirect economic impacts. Ultimately they evaluate some prominent arguments about the costs of REACH and discuss the expected benefits. In the appendices there is the derivation of their economic impacts analysis and a critique of the best-known industry-oriented study.

French

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Autres impacts économiques

Les estimations des coûts de REACH se divisent en deux groupes. Les études financées par les groupes industriels ont souvent constaté que les coûts seraient énormes, et pourraient dévaster l’économie européenne. D’autres études ont fréquemment constaté que les coûts seraient tout à fait infimes, similaires aux estimations présentées dans la section précédente. La présente section examine les arguments économiques présentés dans les études de l’industrie, explorant le chemin d’accès causal avancé pour mener à des coûts énormes. Bien que les études de l’industrie soulèvent des questions qui méritent d’être discutées, elles ne parviennent pas, en fin de compte, à convaincre que REACH entraînera un immense préjudice économique.

French

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