Last reviewed 28 July 2022

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is seeking information from industry undertaking on the use of a set of persistent organic pollutants (POPs).

The Department is carrying out a review of statutory exemptions for permitted uses of the following substances.

  • Decabromodiphenyl ether (decaBDE).

  • Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), its salts and PFOA-related compounds.

  • Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), its salts and its derivatives.

  • Short chain chlorinated paraffins (SCCPs).

The UK is a party to the Stockholm Convention, which lists POP substances that are prohibited from production, marketing or use owing to their propensity to persist in the environment, accumulate in living organisms and pose a risk to human health and the environment.

Under the Convention, the UK must report the extent to which these exemptions are being used in the UK and what efforts are being made to reduce reliance on the exemptions and transition to other less harmful substances. This consultation asks industry to comment on:

  • the manufacture or use of a POP in a particular process

  • which specific exemption are being made use of

  • the purpose(s) of the production or use of the POP

  • the estimated quantity of production or use of the POP

  • why an alternative to the POP cannot be used

  • what efforts are being made to reduce reliance on the POP exemption and to transition to an alternative chemical.

The full details of the consultation including the information required is available here. Comments should be sent to POPS@defra.gov.uk by 12 August 2022.