EU consults Ministers on restricted creosote use
The European Commission has asked EU Ministers to consider its proposal for a restricted approval of the wood preservative, creosote, as a biocide. It failed to gain support for the proposal from the EU regulatory committee in December. Health and environmental concerns were raised in the evaluation of creosote under the EU biocidal products Directive (98/8). However, a 2008 stakeholder consultation ( Agrow No 566, p 11) gave “strong indications” that there were considerable benefits of use in certain applications, and that there were no safer alternatives in some cases, the Commission says. It proposes that creosote be added to Annex I of Directive 98/8 for five years, and that all approvals be subject to a comparative risk assessment. Protective measures would have to be taken during treatment and handling of treated wood. The Commission suggests an Annex I inclusion date of May 1st 2013. Member states that authorise creosote products would be required to justify their conclusions and report on the development of alternatives by July 31st 2016.