Saturday, August 21, 2010

Environmental Legislation: The Latest News

The latest proposed modifications to RoHS include covering ALL electronic equipment (that means military and avionics), elimination of brominated and chlorinated flame retardants (BFR / CFR), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and nanomaterials, and requiring a CE mark to demonstrate compliance. At the same time, consumer electronic companies are actively supporting the elimination of BFRs and PVCs. Why? Maybe because Greenpeace is watching closely and aggressively weighing in on each exemption.

The American RoHS is expanding through IEEE Standards 1680.2 and 1680.3. These standards expand beyond the current RoHS by banning Tetrabromobisphenol-A (TBBPA) and requiring inventorying of over 100 other substances. This will affect you because these standards drive the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) and all new government procurement must be compliant to EPEAT.

China RoHS
The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has released a new general requirements document for China RoHS. The biggest changes? The scope has broadened from Electronic
Information Products listed in a catalog to any Electronic and Electrical Products powered below 1500 VDC or 1000 VAC. In addition to the restricted six (Hg, Pb, Cd, Hex Cr, PBB, PBDE), there is the possibility of "State regulations of other harmful substances" and inspection will be performed at both entry AND exit and items will be subject to quarantine (say goodbye to the building of SnPb electronics in China).

Oh, and don't forget conflict metals and India RoHS.
Have a headache? Don't go for the aspirin. DfR helps hundreds of companies each year with the challenge of meeting environmental requirements, including Design for Environment (DfE). For more information, please contact Randy Schueller,

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