Limiting exposure to chemical substances
The air we breathe, the food we eat, and the products that we handle in our daily lives lead to exposure to chemical substances that may be harmful for health. The public authorities therefore determine risk management values that are not to be exceeded. These values can apply to the general population or to specific populations, particularly in the occupational sphere.
These management values are based on reference values associated exclusively with health criteria. ANSES determines and recommends these reference values, which take into account both in vitro and in vivo studies, as well as available epidemiological data. Find out more about all the substances the Agency is working on and their associated reference values.
Since 2005, the Agency has been responsible for organising the independent, multidisciplinary, collective scientific expert appraisal needed for setting occupational exposure limits (OELs). A dedicated expert committee has therefore been set up to support the Agency in this mission. At the same time, ANSES is also responsible for drafting a list of chemicals for priority assessment, which it proposes to the French Ministry of Labour, thus enabling the Ministry to develop the programme for the OEL expert mission after consultation with the social partners.
Keywords : Reference values (RVs)
As part of its missions and under the French National Environmental & Health Action Plan (2004-2008), the Agency began a national program on toxicity reference values (TRVs) in 2004 with the aim of building solid French expertise that could be shared by the various competent authorities in this area.
To deal with the health issue of indoor air quality and provide public authorities with useful tools for managing this risk, ANSES has been working since 2004 to develop Indoor Air Quality Guidelines (IAQGs) based exclusively on health criteria. Since the beginning of this project, quality guideline values for indoor air have been defined for six substances. This article introduces ANSES’s work on the matter.
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