The Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority of Finland has opened a consultation period requesting opinions on the Authority’s decision to investigate and monitor radiation exposure to workers. Comments were accepted until January 19, 2018. The Authority requests that submissions be broken down according to subheadings indicated in the request for comments form, found online. The key objective of the proposed decision is to regulate the exposure conditions, personal dose monitoring, and the reporting of results to comply with the provisions of the new Radiation Act.
Kenya’s government introduced the draft of The National Waste Management Bill, 2017 in December 2017. The new bill aims to improve waste management by establishing an appropriate legal and institutional framework for the efficient and sustainable management of waste in the framework of the green economy, the realization of Kenya Vision 2030 zero waste goal, and the provision of a clean and healthy environment for all Kenyans for connected purposes.
The general principles of the bill include the following:
The Ontario Court of Appeal recently ruled that the Ministry of Labour (MOL) can prosecute employers under the "general duty" clause of the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) even where the charges impose obligations that are greater than those set out in the regulations under the OHSA.
In Ontario (Labour) v. Quinton Steel (Wellington) Limited, 2017 ONCA 1006 (CanLII), the trial and an appeal justice had determined that the employer could not be found guilty of failing to provide guardrails around a temporary work platform as the applicable regulation under the OHSA, Industrial Establishments, which addressed the issue of guardrails, did not require them in this particular situation, a temporary work platform at a height of six feet. Accordingly, the lower courts ruled that the MOL could not use the "general duty" requirement found in s. 25(2)(h) of the OHSA to impose obligations greater than those in the regulation.
The Ontario Court of Appeal disagreed, reasoning that regulations cannot be expected to anticipate the circumstances of all workplaces across Ontario. The Court found that the key question was whether the installation of guardrails was a reasonable precaution. The Court of Appeal held that the trial justice failed to address that point. The appeal court allowed the appeal and ordered a new trial before a different justice.
Ukraine consulted on requirements for safety and health in the use of production equipment by employees. The requirements would apply to all business entities, and establish minimum requirements for the safety and health protection of employees during the use of industrial equipment. They have been developed on the basis of Directive 2009/104 / EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 September 2009 on the minimum safety and health requirements for the use of work equipment by workers in the exercise of their professional activities (second individual Directive within the meaning of Article 16, paragraph 1 Directive 89/391 / EEC). The consultation closed on January 6, 2018.
On June 15, 2017, Sweden’s national legislature passed the Climate Act, a climate policy framework for the country. This framework was developed following a 2014 government policy promise and work from the Cross-Party Committee on Environmental Objectives. The purpose of the framework is to develop a clear, consistent and coherent climate policy for the country. The pillars of the framework include:
· New climate goals to reduce and eliminate emissions;
· The Climate Act to establish how the Government’s climate goals will be carried out; and
· A climate policy council to assist the Government with independent assessments of goals and progress.
The framework entered into force on January 1, 2018, and will provide long-term conditions for business and society to implement and transition to a country that is conscious of climate change. Under the framework, the Government’s climate policy must be based on the climate goals and specify how work is to be carried out. With the enactment of the framework, the Government must present a climate report every year in its Budget Bill and develop a climate policy action plan every four years to describe how climate change goals have been and are to be achieved.
In accordance with the Safe Management of Hazardous Chemicals Regulations (Decree No. 591), the Regulations on the Environmental Management of First-Time Import and Export of Chemicals (Circular No. 140), and agreements made in several conventions, the Ministry of Environmental Protection has released the PRC’s Strictly Restricted Toxic Chemicals Directory (2018). All entities involved in the import and export of toxic chemicals included in the Directory must follow all rules and regulations put forth by the MEP when conducting operations. The Directory went into effect on January 1, 2018, and repealed the PRC’s Strictly Restricted Toxic Chemicals Directory (2014), 2016 Notice on Adding Hexabromocyclododecane to the PRC’s Strictly Restricted Toxic Chemicals Directory (2014), the MEP No. 113 Notice on Strengthening Environmental Management on Toxic Chemicals Import and Export (2009), and the Notice on Further Strengthening Environmental Management of Imported Toxic Chemicals by Trade Entities.
Voting has started on the final draft of ISO 45001, the occupational health and safety standard. The upcoming standard will follow in the footsteps of ISO’s other management systems approaches, such as ISO 14001 (environment) and ISO 9001 (quality). It will also take into account other international standards in this area, including OHSAS 18001, ILO-OSH guidelines, various national standards and the ILO’s international labour standards and conventions. Publication is expected in March 2018.
India is expected to implement a ban on seven persistent organic pollutants (POPs) by the middle of 2018. In addition to a ban on manufacture, use, sale, and import/export of the chemicals. Current holders must notify the government of their stocks within six months of the law being passed under the proposed regulations. The seven substances were earmarked for elimination in 2009, after they were added to Annex A of the Stockholm Convention on POPs. However, India is one of a small number of signatories to the convention that does not automatically adopt new rules and must explicitly opt-in to any changes.
The Ministry of Labor made many changes to articles in the Labor Health Protection Rules in order to do the following: better protect workers in larger companies; better prevent muscular, bone, and mental health occupational diseases; ensure prevention of diseases caused by exposure to chromic acid, dichromic acid, and other acids and salts; and provide clearer guidance on the distribution of medical and health professionals according to entity size. The new version of Rules also provides for health professional work safety training requirements within the entities.
On November 13, 2017, the Ministry of Finance for Thailand published, in the Official Gazette, Ministerial Regulations on the Storage and Handling of Dangerous Goods. The Regulations outline requirements for storing, loading and transporting dangerous goods that are in the customs territory and taken out of the customs territory. The Regulations specify that in the case of port or airport customs areas, there is no safe place to carry dangerous goods. In addition, the Regulations specify that the transport and storage of dangerous goods should be carried out in a safe place in accordance with the rules, procedures and conditions at the site.