Official Journal of the European Union

C 187/80

Action brought on 21 March 2019 — Exxonmobil Petroleum & Chemical v ECHA

(Case T-177/19)

(2019/C 187/87)

Language of the case: English


Applicant: Exxonmobil Petroleum & Chemical BVBA (Antwerp, Belgium) (represented by: M. Navin-Jones, Solicitor and A. Kołtunowska, lawyer)

Defendant: European Chemicals Agency

Form of order sought

The applicant claims that the Court should:

declare the application admissible and well-founded;

annul ECHA’s decision no ED/88/2018 concerning inclusion of substances of very high concern in the Candidate List for eventual inclusion in Annex XIV, published on 15 January 2019, as it pertains to phenanthrene; and

order the defendant to pay the costs.

Pleas in law and main arguments

In support of the action, the applicant relies on two pleas in law.


First plea in law, alleging that the defendant manifestly erred in its assessment of the very persistent proprieties of phenanthrene and exceeded its competence as well as breached Article 59 of Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 (1) by:

relying on finding of the 2009 Member State committee support document on the very persistent proprieties of phenanthrene as a constituent of coal tar pitch, high temperature without making its own assessment of the information at hand and thereby importing the vitiating errors in that support document;

reaching conclusions on the very persistent proprieties of phenanthrene which the evidence relied upon would have not been capable of supporting;

failing to consider available evidence that would have risen serious questions about the reliability and extreme conservatism of the water-sediment simulation OECD 308 study on phenanthrene;

failing to take into consideration information calling into question the use of a calculation to adjust the results of the OECD 308 study to account for temperature;

failing to assess the new evidence on the persistence of phenanthrene that would have been made available to it during the public consultation; and

by failing to consider all relevant information in the weight of evidence determination of the persistent proprieties of phenanthrene specifically with respect to the photodegradation, dissolution, and volatilisation of phenanthrene.


Second plea in law, alleging that by adopting the contested act, the defendant infringed the European Union law principle of proportionality.

(1)  Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 of 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, 93/105/EC and 2000/21/EC (OJ L 396, 30.12.2006, p. 1).