In a press release published on April 5, 2019, the European Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) announced an update of its Product Environmental Footprint (PEF) and Organisation Environmental Footprint (OEF) methods to better consider impacts of chemical emissions. The JRC reports that with this update it has calculated new characterization factors for 6,011 substances describing freshwater ecotoxicity, for 3,423 substances describing non-cancer human toxicity, and for 621 substances describing cancer toxicity. It has also “improved the consistency and robustness of the characterization factors for thousands of other substances.”

This comes as the result of “a huge data mining effort of data from the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).” Based on life cycle assessments, the updated PEF and OEF methods aim “to generate more consistent, comprehensive and robust assessments of the impacts of toxic emissions of products and organizations.”

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JRC (April 5, 2019). “Environmental Footprint: New chemical toxicity indicators.

Chemical Watch (April 10, 2019). “Toxicity indicators added to chemical emissions measurement methods, JRC.