Implementing the GHS – Consultation 2
Decision Date: 15 October 2020
We have updated New Zealand's hazardous substance classification system to one based on Revision 7 (2017) of the GHS.
The Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) is an international hazard classification system for chemicals created by the United Nations. The hazards are communicated on labels and safety data sheets including how to safely store, use and dispose of chemicals.
The GHS is used by more than 50 countries, including all of New Zealand’s major trading partners. We:
- implemented a new classification based on the GHS 7 on 30 April 2021
- issued a new set of new group standards based on GHS 7 classifications
- reissued several thousand individual approvals that were issued before 1 December 2017 to:
- assign GHS 7 classifications
- update their controls to bring them into line with health and safety reforms that came into force on that date
- reassessed hundreds of individual approvals that were issued after 1 December 2017 to assign GHS 7 classifications
- revoked several thousand individual approvals that could be manged under a group standard
- made other minor changes to a small number of group standards.
This page contains all the documents relating to the consultation and decisions about individual approvals, group standards and notices.
Updates to individual approvals
All individual approvals issued before 30 April 2021 have either been reassessed or reissued to incorporate GHS 7, or have been revoked. This work was carried out in batches
More information about these changes, the fate of any individual approval and the new approval documents, are on the Hazardous substances approvals page.
16 April 2021
Our Chief Executive approved the:
- reissue of 3,093 hazardous substance approvals
- revocation of 5,360 hazardous substance approvals as they could be covered by a group standard.
22 April 2021
A HSNO decision-making committee approved the reassessment of 222 hazardous substances approvals to update their hazard classifications to GHS 7 classifications.
17 May 2021
Our Chief Executive approved:
- the reissue of four hazardous substance approvals. These four individual approvals were updated to allow them to be processed in a separate reassessment process.
- a minor and technical amendment to two individual approvals. The decision and the tracked changes version can be found below.
12 November 2021
A HSNO decision-making committee approved the reassessment of 71 hazardous substances approvals to update their hazard classifications to GHS 7 classifications, as part of a separate consultation.
2 December 2021
Our Chief Executive approved the reissue of 146 hazardous substance approvals to update the hazard classifications to GHS 7 classifications.
17 December 2021
Our Chief Executive approved the reissue of 93 hazardous substance approvals to update the hazard classifications to GHS 7 classifications.
7 March 2022
Our Chief Executive approved the reissue of substance HSR101527, to correct an error.
Update to group standards
All 208 group standards have now been updated to GHS 7 and the new 2020 group standards are now in force.
This update was carried out in four parts.
19 October 2020
A HSNO decision-making committee approved the issue of 207 new group standards that are based on GHS 7 classifications. The committee also approved the revocation of 209 group standards that are based on the 2001 HSNO classification system.
11 March 2021
A HSNO decision-making committee approved the issue of the Fire fighting Chemicals Group Standard that is based on GHS 7 classifications. This group standard was updated separately as it was undergoing a separate amendment process to incorporate changes to the Stockholm Convention.
17 March 2021
Our General Manager, Hazardous Substances and New Organisms, approved minor and technical amendments to 68 group standards. These were gazetted on 23 March 2021. The group standards affected and the changes are:
Dental Products (Subsidiary Hazard) Group Standard 2020
The phrase “8% or more hydrogen peroxide” in Part 1 clause 1(2) was replaced with “less than 7% hydrogen peroxide”.
Veterinary Medicines (Limited Pack Size, Finished Dose) Group Standard 2020 and Veterinary Medicines (Non-dispersive Closed System Application) Group Standard 2020
The subsidiary hazard “skin corrosion Category 2 or Category 3” was replaced with “skin corrosion Category 1B or Category 1C”.
65 corrosive group standards
The hazard classification “skin irritation Category 2” was added to the list of subsidiary hazards.
17 May 2021
We approved minor and technical amendments to correct errors to the Fire fighting Chemicals Group Standard and this was gazetted on 31 May 2021.
On 15 October 2020, the EPA Board issued two new EPA notices:
- the Hazardous Substances (Hazard Classification) Notice 2020
- the EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice 2020.
The EPA Notices (Amendments and Revocations) Notice outlines the amendments made to the following six EPA notices:
- Hazardous Substances (Labelling) Notice 2017
- Hazardous Substances (Safety Data Sheets) Notice 2017
- Hazardous Substances (Packaging) Notice 2017
- Hazardous Substances (Disposal) Notice 2017
- Hazardous Substances (Hazardous Property Controls) Notice 2017
- Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers Notice) 2015.
The new and amended notices come into force on 30 April 2021.
A series of public consultations were carried out. The following documents relate to these consultations.
GHS Consultation 2
This opened in June 2020.
Appendix 1: Glossary of terms (this appendix is contained in the main consultation document (PDF, 1.1MB)
Appendix 2: October 2019 consultation (PDF, 1.3MB)
Appendix 3: Read the submissions analysis report from the October 2019 consultation (PDF, 815KB)
Appendix 4: Exposure drafts of the new and amended Notices
Appendix 5: Proposed group standards - these are available on request
Appendix 6: Proposed classifications and fates of approved substance (XLXS, 1.7MB)
Appendix 7: Proposed controls mapping spreadsheet (XLXS, 662KB)
Submission analysis report and reply to the consultation
We received 28 submissions on GHS consultation 2. The submissions analysis report has a summary of the submissions and our recommendations on the proposals.
Following consideration of submissions, we made a number of changes to the proposed GHS 7 classifications and fates of some substances listed in Appendix 6 to the consultation document.
Post GHS 2 consultation proposed group standards
Following the second consultation on the GHS 7 changes we made some changes to the group standards and made these available to the public. These are available on request.
GHS 1 consultation
Information about our first consultation, which was open for submission in October 2019, is available at the link below: