Occupational limit values for the exposure assessment of chemicals based on environmental monitoring

Authors

  • Andrea Cattaneo Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2962-7259
  • Andrea Spinazzé Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como
  • Davide Campagnolo Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Francesca Borghi Dipartimento di Scienze Mediche e Chirurgiche, Università di Bologna, Bologna
  • Sabrina Rovelli Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Giacomo Fanti Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Marta Keller Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Carolina Zellino Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Alessio Carminati Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy
  • Giovanni De Vito Department of Theoretical and Applied Sciences, University of Insubria, Varese, Italy
  • Domenico Maria Cavallo Department of Science and High Technology, University of Insubria, Como, Italy

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.36125/ijoehy.v14i1.490

Keywords:

occupational exposure; inhalation exposure limit; chemical risk agents; occupational hygiene

Abstract

Occupational exposure limit values ​​(OELs) are of fundamental importance in chemical risk assessment to take a decision on the acceptability of exposure levels measured in environmental monitoring campaigns, and for regulatory purposes as well. In the last five years, the issuing of European directives on dangerous substances, including some directives on carcinogens, mutagens and reprotoxic agents (CMR), has contributed to a rapid evolution in the availability of mandatory OELs. At present, the industrial hygienist must deal with various OELs, sometimes characterized by key differences in terms of type, applicability, derivation methods and number of chemical agents covered. Some scientific and socio-political issues, dictated for instance by the selection of the critical effect or the toxicological or epidemiological point of departure, the possibility of considering alternative data gained from in vitro or in silico tests, the rigidity of the derivation processes, the assessment of socio-economic and feasibility factors, can ultimately lead to the definition and proposal of different OELs ​​for the same substance. The occupational hygienist must therefore take these aspects into account when choosing the most appropriate limit value for the assessment of occupational exposure to chemical agents and its compliance with OELs.

References

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH). 2023. TLVs and BEIs: based on the documentation of the threshold limit values for chemical and physical agents & biological exposure indices. ACGIH, 287 pp.

AIDII ETS (2023). Associazione Italiana degli Igienisti Industriali. “Database VaLim” a cura di AIDII-ETS. https://www.aidii.it/valori-limite/ Ultimo accesso: 09/08/2023

Bertazzi, P. A. (2010). Health-based occupational exposure limits: an european experience in perspective. Ital. J. Occup. Environ. Hyg., 1(2), 87-95.

Breysse, P. (1991). ACGIH TLVs: A critical Analysis of the Documentation. Am. J. Industr. Med., 20, 423-428.

Cattaneo, A., Spinazzè, A., Cavallo, D. M. (2018). Occupational exposure limit values for chemical risk assessment at European level. Ital. J. Occup. Environ. Hyg, 9, 93-97.

Consiglio Europeo (CE). (1998). Direttiva 98/24/CE del Consiglio del 7 aprile 1998 sulla protezione della salute e della sicurezza dei lavoratori contro i rischi derivanti da agenti chimici durante il lavoro (quattordicesima direttiva particolare ai sensi dell'articolo 16, paragrafo 1, della direttiva 89/391/CEE)

Decreto Legislativo 9 aprile 2008, n. 81 - Attuazione dell’articolo 1 della legge 3 agosto 2007, n. 123, in materia di tutela della salute e della sicurezza nei luoghi di lavoro. Testo coordinato con il D.Lgs. 3 agosto 2009, n. 106 (GU Serie Generale n.101 del 30-04-2008 - Suppl. Ordinario n. 108), (Decreto integrativo e correttivo: Gazzetta Ufficiale n. 180 del 05 agosto 2009 - Suppl. Ordinario n. 142/L).

Ding, Q., Schenk, L., Malkiewicz, K., Hansson, S. O. (2011) Occupational exposure limits in Europe and Asia–continued divergence or global harmonization? Regul. Toxicol. Pharmacol., 61, 296-309.

European Commission (EC). (2006). Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 concerning the registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals (REACH), establishing a European Chemicals Agency, amending directive 1999/45/EC and repealing Council Regulation (EEC) No 793/93 and Commission Regulation (EC) No 1488/94 as well as Council Directive 76/769/EEC and Commission Directives 91/155/EEC, 93/67/EEC, 93/15/EC and 2000/21/EC.European Commission. Off J; L396: 1-849.

European Commission (EC). (2010). Guidance for employers on controlling risks from chemicals. Interface between Chemicals Agents Directive and REACH at the workplace.

European Commission (EC). (2020a). Doc. CA/64/2020 37th Meeting of Competent Authorities for REACH and CLP (CARACAL). Open session, 17- 18 November 2020.

European Commission (EC). (2020b). The Advisory Committee on Safety and Health at Work. Interface between EU OSH Legislation and REACH restrictions. Doc.2276/20. Adopted on 10/12/2020.

European Chemical Agency (ECHA). (2012). Guidance on information requirements and chemical safety assessment. Chapter R.8: characterisation of dose [concentration]-response for human health. Version: 2.1. 3. Helsinki, Finland. .

European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). (2019). Guidance on information requirements and chemical safety assessment. Appendix to chapter R.8: Guidance for preparing a scientific report for health‐based exposure limits at the workplace. Version 1.0. August 2019. Helsinki, Finland.

European Chemical Agency (ECHA). (2013). Establishing reference DNELs for DEHP. European Chemicals Agency: Helsinki, Finland.

Pagliai P., Ferdenzi P. 2018. Side-effects of the REACH regulation on the development of directives on the protection of workers’ health. Ital. J. Occup. Environ. Hyg., 9(2), 88-92.

Institut für Arbeitsschutz der Deutschen Gesetzlichen Unfallversicherung (IFA). (2023). GESTIS Substance Database. Information system on hazardous substances of the German Social Accident Insurance. https://www.dguv.de/ifa/gestis/gestis-stoffdatenbank/index-2.jsp Ultimo accesso il 09/08/2023.

Nano, G., Spinazzè, A. (a cura di). Cattaneo, A., Cavallo, D.M., Derudi, M., Gino, G.M., Lovreglio, P., Moretto, A., Nano, G., Sesana, G., Spinazzè, A. Strategie di valutazione del rischio chimico negli ambienti di lavoro - Guida operativa per la valutazione dell’esposizione occupazionale per via inalatoria ad agenti di rischio chimici e per la verifica della conformità con i valori limite di esposizione occupazionale. “Monografie in Igiene Industriale” - Volume 4. Associazione Italiana Degli Igienisti Industriali per l’Igiene Industriale e per l’Ambiente - Ente del Terzo Settore (AIDII ETS), Milano, 2023. ISBN 978-88-86293-43-3.

World Health Organization (WHO). 2010. WHO guidelines for indoor air quality: selected pollutants. World Health Organization. Regional Office for Europe.

Risk and policy analysis (RPA). (2012). Assessment of the health and environmental benefits of REACH. Final report. Part B – assessment of benefits. Prepared for DG Environment. Norfolk, UK:

Schenk, L., & Johanson, G. (2011). A quantitative comparison of the safety margins in the European indicative occupational exposure limits and the derived no-effect levels for workers under REACH. Toxicol. Sci, 121(2), 408-416.

Schneider, K., Dilger, M., Drossard, C., Ott, H., Kaiser, E. 2022. Derivation of occupational exposure limits: Differences in methods and protection levels. J. Appl. Toxicol, 42(5):913-926.

UNI EN 1540: 2012. Esposizione nell’ambiente di lavoro - Terminologia

UNI EN 689:2019. Esposizione nei luoghi di lavoro - Misurazione dell’esposizione per inalazione agli agenti chimici - Strategia per la verifica della conformità coi valori limite di esposizione occupazionale. Maggio 2019.

The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH). ACGIH® Threshold Limit Values (TLVs®) and Biological Exposure Indices (BEIs®), 2023. ISBN-10. 160726157X.

Tynkkynen, S., Santonen, T., & Stockmann-Juvala, H. (2015). A comparison of REACH-derived no-effect levels for workers with EU indicative occupational exposure limit values and national limit values in Finland. Annals of Occupational Hygiene, 59(4), 401-415.

Published

2024-02-10