Government of Canada has recently published in Canada Gazette Part II, Volume 155 June 2021 the Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products Regulations which prohibit the import, sale or offer for sale of composite wood products that emit formaldehyde above established limits.
In order to facilitate regulatory harmonization and help establish a level international playing field, the Regulations align with the United States (U.S.) Rule, Toxic Substances Control Act, Title VI (TSCA Title VI), to the extent possible. The Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products Regulations will be made under the Canada Environment Protection Act (CEPA).
The Regulations require that composite wood panels and laminated products be tested regularly according to specific emissions test methods and meet emission limits in order to be compliant. Finished goods, such as furniture or flooring, must only incorporate composite wood panels and laminated products that have been tested and that have met the emission limits in order to be compliant with the Regulations. All composite wood products must be labelled prior to being sold in Canada, or the seller must keep a copy of the label and have it available upon request. Composite wood products that already have a bilingual label indicating compliance with the U.S. Rule will be recognized as compliant with Canadian labelling requirements.
In addition, the Regulations do not apply to products such as pallets and packaging materials that are not intended to be kept in people’s homes, wood used in vessels and vehicles (other than mobile homes, motor homes, or recreational trailers), and a variety of highly specialized wood products. A full list of the non-applications is included in the Regulations.
The Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products Regulations will require that, in addition to meeting the formaldehyde emission limits, composite wood panels and laminated products must also be certified by a third-party certifier (TPC) prior to import or sale. Composite wood products that have been certified under TSCA Title VI will be accepted as certified under the Regulations.
The Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products Regulations will come into force 18 months after their publication in the Canada Gazette, Part II. Most products imported or sold in Canada will need to comply with the applicable requirements once the Regulations come into force. However, the emission requirements specific to laminated products will not take effect until five years after the Regulations come into force, nor will testing and certification requirements for laminated products. Furthermore, the Regulations would not apply to products manufactured in Canada or imported before the coming-into-force date, so long as records are available to demonstrate the date of manufacture.
Learn more on the Formaldehyde Emissions from Composite Wood Products Regulations (SOR/2021-148)
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