"Polymer REACH" E-Learning Package - Available Soon

(PresseBox) ( Brussels - Belgium, )
A major European collaborative project focusing on the REACH legislation is nearing comple-tion. REACH - the Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals, is the largest single piece of legislation aiming to improve safety in the use and application of chemicals, although it does apply to all industry sectors.

The main output from the project will be an innovative "E-Learning Package", which to-gether with an associated REACH Handbook, will both be designed specifically to help Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) across Europe to comply with the REACH legislation.

The "Polymer REACH" project is now 18 months into its 2-year programme, which will run until November 2011. The project is supported by funding of €0.5 million from the Leonardo "Lifelong Learning Programme", with a team of 7 European partners, led by Smithers Rapra, working with other partners from the UK, Italy, Portugal, Belgium, Lithuania and Estonia. The overall objective of "Polymer REACH" has been to develop new content, an e-learning platform and supporting materials specifically for the European Polymer Industry, to help companies, particularly SMEs, to understand and increase their knowledge base on REACH. By facilitating the implementation of REACH, the project will help to bring about the planned-for environmental gains, whilst at the same time lessening the economic burden on companies.

Work on developing the "E-Learning Package" is now well advanced and the beta version is about to be trialled with some 40 companies around Europe. Volunteer companies are cur- rently being sought from all EU countries to participate in the trialling process. Companies can contact their local project partner if they are interested to see the first version of the package (see list of partners below).

Following these trials and final modifications, the completed version will become available from November 2011 via the project website. As well as this, an associated REACH Handbook will also become available at the same time, offering European polymer SMEs an additional supporting resource to help them manage their way through the REACH re-quirements.

Anyone is welcome to register free of charge on the project website, www.polymer-reach.eu. Copies of both a State of the Art report and also a Benchmarking Survey are already freely available to download from the website. The State of the Art report provides a comprehensive listing of current sources of information about the REACH legislation, as well as contact details for national help-lines. The Benchmarking Survey involved feedback from 135 detailed industry interviews at the start of the project, highlighting a lack of awareness or understanding of company responsibilities in over 20% of cases, which this project is designed to overcome.

The project consortium is...

Smithers Rapra (UK), RAPRA Limited (UK), EuPC (Belgium), Proplast (Italy), CASO (Portu-gal), APINI (Lithuania), MTU Balti Keskkonnafoorum (Estonia)
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