Pollutants and sustainability
EU Directive 2011/65/EU
With the coming into force of the RoHS Directive 2011/65/EU, the RoHS requirements are now part of the mandatory CE marking procedure. The Directive restricts the use of hazardous substances in electronic equipment.
In homogeneous materials, the following limits for these substances may not be exceeded: Lead (0.1 %), Mercury (0.1 %), Cadmium (0.01 %), Hexavalent chromium (0.1 %), Polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) (0.1 %), Polybrominated diphyenl ether (PBDE) (0.1%)
Comparable with the RoHS requirements in Europe, the operation of electrical and electronic products up to a voltage limit of 1500V (DC) and 1000V (AC) must take the requirements with regard to the China RoHS into consideration. The Standard GB/T 26572-2011 currently specifies the same 6 prohibited substances as in EU RoHS with identical limit values.
However, there are differences to the EU Directive in terms of documentation, labeling and possible exceptions that have to be observed.
The guidelines for issuing the GS mark for IT equipment also include a limit on the use of PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) in exposed plastics. PAHs can be contained in plastics in the form of plasticizers or as soot in black pigment. Many PAHs are carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic to reproduction.
The restriction through the GS mark currently encompasses 18 different substances. For plastics that have to be handled for more than 30 sec. during use, a total limit value of 10mg/kg is defined for all 18 substances.