EU’s REACH causing controversy


The European Union’s new REACH regulation introduced for the evaluation and regulation of chemicals is causing suppliers and chip vendors alike to scramble to meet initial requirements and could have a detrimental effect on semiconductor and chip manufacture in Europe, according to speakers at an International Sematech Manufacturing Initiative workshop recently.

The EU’s Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (REACH) regulation came into effect as law on 1st June 2007 amid a minor wave of controversy and paper trails, as explained and explored in September’s gasworld magazine, and requires that chemicals and certain gases to be used in high volumes must be evaluated and registered.

According to Dawn Speranza, an Intel Corp. environment, health and safety engineer, REACH has cost implications that could make manufacturing in Europe overly expensive.

Speranza commented, “The cost of manufacturing in Ireland is high anyway. It could put factories in Europe out of business. We need to keep the number of restricted chemicals to a minimum.”

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