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• Publication Date: 04/09/1999
• Publication Type: Notice
• Fed Register #: 64:17435
• Title: Notice of a Public Meeting Regarding Government Activities on International Harmonization of Chemical Classification and Labeling Systems.

DEPARTMENT OF STATE

[Public Notice 3024]

Notice of a Public Meeting Regarding Government Activities on International Harmonization of Chemical Classification and Labeling Systems

AGENCY: Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES), Department of State.


SUMMARY: This public meeting will provide an update on current activities related to international harmonization since the previous public meeting, conducted January 11, 1999 (See Department of State Public Notice 2955 on pages 1266-1267 of the Federal Register of January 8, 1999). The meeting will also offer interested organizations and individuals the opportunity to provide information and views for consideration in the development of United States Government policy positions. For more complete information on the harmonization process, please refer to State Department Public Notice 2526, pages 15951-15957 of the Federal Register of April 3, 1997.

The meeting will take place from 10 a.m. until noon on May 27, 1999, in Room N 5437 A-D, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, D.C. Attendees should use the entrance at C and Third Streets NW. To facilitate entry, please have a picture ID available and/or a U.S. Government building pass if applicable.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For further information or to submit written comments or information, please contact Mary Frances Lowe, U.S. Department of State, OES/ENV, Room 4325, 2201 C Street NW., Washington, D.C. 20520. Phone (202) 647-4284, fax (202) 647-5947. A public docket is also available for review at the Department of Labor (OSHA docket H-022H).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of State is announcing a public meeting of the interagency committee concerned with the international harmonization of chemical hazard classification and labeling systems (an effort referred to as the "globally harmonized system'' or GHS). The purpose of the meeting is to provide interested groups and individuals with an update on activities since the January 11, 1999, public meeting, a preview of upcoming international meetings, and an opportunity to submit additional information and comments for consideration in developing U.S. Government positions. Representatives of the following agencies participate in the interagency group: the Department of State, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Transportation, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food and Drug Administration, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Agriculture, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.

The Agenda of the public meeting will include:

1. Introduction

2. Reports on recent international meetings

  • Second meeting of the Inter-Organization Program for the Sound Management of Chemicals (IOMC)/International Labour Organisation Working Group on Hazard Communication, January 26-27, 1999, Geneva Switzerland.

  • Thirteenth Consultation of Coordinating Group for the Harmonization of Chemical Classification Systems, January 28-29, 1999, Geneva Switzerland.

  • Third meeting of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development Expert Group on Classification Criteria for Mixtures, February 1-3, 1999, Paris France.

3. Preparation for upcoming meetings

  • Third meeting of the Inter-Organization Program for the Sound Management of Chemicals (IOMC)/International Labour Organisation Working Group on Hazard Communication, June 21-23, 1999, Dublin, Ireland. This group will consider final terms of reference and preparation of a detailed review document describing current hazard communications programs.

  • Fourteenth Consultation of the Coordinating Group for the Harmonization of Chemical Classification Systems, June 24-25, 1999, Dublin, Ireland. Among other issues, this group will consider long and short terms implementation issues and more detailed terms of reference for an ongoing joint committee on transport of dangerous goods and the GHS and a GHS subcommittee.

  • Fourth meeting of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development Expert Group on Classification Criteria for Mixtures, June 28-29, 1999, Dublin, Ireland. This group will focus on approaches and options for harmonization of existing systems for classifying chemical mixtures according to their health and environmental hazards.

  • UN Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, July 5- 16, 1999, Geneva, Switzerland.

4. Public Comments

5. Concluding Remarks

Interested parties are invited to submit their comments as soon as possible for consideration in the development of U.S. positions and to present their views orally and/or in writing at the public meeting. Participants may address other topics relating to harmonization of chemical classification and labeling systems and are particularly invited to identify issues of concern to specific sectors that may be affected by the GHS. Participants who attended and participated in recent international sessions may also offer their observations on the results of the sessions.

All written comments will be placed in the public docket (OSHA docket H-022H). The docket is open from 10 am until 4 pm, Monday through Friday, and is located at the Department of Labor, Room 2625, 200 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC. (Telephone: 202-219-7894; Fax: 202-219-5046). The public may also consult the docket to review previous Federal Register notices, comment received, Questions and Answers about the GHS, a response to comments on the April 3, 1997, Federal Register notice, and other relevant documents.

Dated: April 2, 1999.

Michael Metelits,
Director, Office of Environmental Policy,
Bureau of Oceans and International
Environmental and Scientific Affairs
.

[FR Doc. 99-8915 Filed 4-8-99; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4710-09-M


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