51997AP0072

Decision on the common position adopted by the Council with a view to adopting a Council Directive amending for the first time Directive 90/394/EEC on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to carcinogens at work (sixth individual directive within the meaning of Article 16(1) of Directive 89/391/EEC) (C4-0637/96 95/ 0229(SYN))

Official Journal C 132 , 28/04/1997 P. 0079


A4-0072/97

Decision on the common position adopted by the Council with a view to adopting a Council Directive amending for the first time Directive 90/394/EEC on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to carcinogens at work (sixth individual directive within the meaning of Article 16(1) of Directive 89/391/EEC) (C4-0637/96 - 95/0229(SYN))

(Cooperation procedure: second reading)

The European Parliament,

- having regard to the common position of the Council, C4-0637/96 - 95/0229(SYN),

- having regard to its opinion at first reading ((OJ C 198, 8.7.1996, p. 182.)) on the Commission proposal to the Council, COM(95)0425 ((OJ C 317, 28.11.1995, p. 16.)),

- having been consulted by the Council pursuant to Article 189c of the EC Treaty,

- having regard to Rule 67 of its Rules of Procedure,

- having regard to the recommendation for second reading of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A4-0072/97),

1. Amends the common position as follows;

2. Instructs its President to forward this decision to the Council and Commission.

(Amendment 1)

Recital 2a (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(2a) Whereas the Commission's communication on a Community programme in the field of safety, hygiene and health at the workplace (1996-2000)(1) provides in particular for the continuation of work on setting limit values for exposure at the workplace;

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(1) COM (95)0282.

(Amendment 2)

Recital 8a (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(8a) Whereas, in order to ensure that the action taken is both flexible and productive, the Commission should clarify the possibilities for simplifying the setting of limit values for carcinogens, particularly those for which limit values based purely on health grounds have already been obtained from scientific evidence and reliable studies;

(Amendment 3)

Recital 8b (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(8b) Whereas the Commission should draw up a plan on how the necessary limit values can be set as quickly as possible for all the substances listed as class 1 and 2 carcinogens in Annex VI to Directive 67/548/EEC;

(Amendment 4)

Recital 9a (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(9a) Whereas it is important to set biological limit values to carcinogens in order to estimate the level of absorption of other channels than the breath; whereas bio- monitoring is an important procedure for assessing benzene exposure, and the Commission should therefore propose a biological limit value for benzene without delay;

(Amendment 5)

Recital 9b (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(9b) Whereas arsenic and several arsenic compounds (arsenic trioxide; arsenic pentoxide, arsenic acid and its salts) are carcinogens to which a great number of workers are exposed in a wide variety of areas; whereas the setting of limit values for these substances and the consequent reduction of exposure will reduce these risks; whereas arsenic and several arsenic compounds should be added in the Commission priority list of substances for scientific evaluation in order to set limit values as soon as possible;

(Amendment 6)

Recital 10a (new)

>Text following EP vote>

(10a) Whereas all the directives concerning protection of the health of workers at the place of work and the directives concerning protection of public health and of the general environment must reflect a single overall vision of socio-economic development in the European Union; whereas the measures taken concerning benzene under this Directive must therefore be consistent with the aims and provisions of Directive 94/63/EC on the control of volatile organic compound emissions (and thus of benzene emissions) resulting from the storage of petrol and its distribution from terminals to service stations(1);

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(1) OJ L 365, 31.12.1994, p. 24.

(Amendment 7)

ARTICLE 1(2)

Article 2(b) (Directive 90/394/EEC)

>Original text>

(b) 'limit value' means, unless otherwise specified, the limit of the time-weighted average of the concentration for a 'carcinogen' in the air within the breathing zone of a worker in relation to a specified reference period as set out in Annex III.

>Text following EP vote>

(b) 'limit value' means, unless otherwise specified, the limit of the time-weighted average of the concentration for a 'carcinogen' in the air within the breathing zone of a worker in relation to a specified reference period as set out in Annex III. Breathing zone is the space from where he takes his breath.

(Amendment 8)

ARTICLE 1(2)

Article 2(ba) (new) (Directive 90/394/EEC)

>Text following EP vote>

(ba) 'biological limit value' means the limit of concentration, in the appropriate biological medium, of the relevant agent, its metabolite, or an indicator of effect. It shall be forbidden to exceed this value.

(Amendment 9)

ARTICLE 1(6)

Annex III(A), table, last column (Directive 90/394/EEC)

>Original text>

Transitional measures

Limit value: 3 ppm

(=9.75 mg/m3) until (3 years after date in Article 2(1) of Directive 96/.../EC)

>Text following EP vote>

Deleted

(Amendment 10)

ARTICLE 1(6)

Annex III(A), new subparagraph after table (Directive 90/394/EEC)

>Text following EP vote>

A uniform measuring procedure for determining the limit value for benzene in the air shall be laid down.

(Amendment 11)

ARTICLE 2(1), first subparagraph

>Original text>

1. Member States shall bring into force the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with this Directive not later than ...(*). They shall forthwith inform the Commission thereof.

>Text following EP vote>

1. Member States shall bring into force the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with this Directive not later than 31 December 1998. They shall forthwith inform the Commission thereof.

>Original text>

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(*) Three years after adoption of this Directive.