Joint Press Release with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare and the Ministry of the EnvironmentSummarized Results of the Second Investigation into the Presence of Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) as By-products in Organic Pigments
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW), and the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) conducted investigation into the presence of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) as by-products in organic pigments. Out of all the organic pigments subject to such investigation, the results of about 23 organic pigments were already announced by press release. In addition, METI, MHLW and MOE (hereinafter called the "Ministries") have compiled the results of another investigation into other organic pigments than the 23 pigments and hereby release the results.
There were no additional organic pigments containing 50 ppm or more of PCBs found in this investigation.
In response to a report from the Japan Dyestuff and Industrial Chemicals Association (JDICA), revealing that some organic pigments contained small amounts of PCBs unintentionally generated as by-products, the Ministries requested the businesses that manufacture or import organic pigments that might generate PCBs as by-products to analyze the presence of PCBs in organic pigments and to report the results to the Ministries.
On May 28, 2012, the Ministries released the then-latest compiled results of the investigation into the 23 organic pigments for which JDICA reported in February 2012 that it had detected 0.5 ppm or more of PCBs (the first investigation).
In addition, the Ministries have compiled the results of a similar investigation into other organic pigments than the 23 pigments (the second investigation) and hereby release the results of both first and second investigations, by which all of the pigments subject to the investigations were analyzed.
2. Results of the first investigation
The Ministries have received reports on the investigations from 54 businesses about 553 items in total, including the pigments already announced in the first investigation.
There were no additional organic pigments containing 50 ppm or more of PCBs found in this second investigation.
Table: Summary of the compiled results of the investigations into the amount of PCBs contained in organic pigments
|PCB density (ppm) \Number of items||To 0.5||Over 0.5 to 1||1-5||5-10||10-15||15-20||20-25||25-50||Over 50||Total|
|First investigation (23 pigments)||58||25||50||16||6||4||9||9||7||184|
|Second investigation (pigments other than the 23 pigments)||320||2||15||4||3||1||2||1||0||369|
Note 1: The Ministries have already requested the businesses to suspend manufacturing, importing and shipping the items that contain 50 ppm or more of PCBs, which are defined in the international treaty, the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), as substances that should not be distributed, and also have requested the businesses to collect such items.
Note 2: These figures include the revised or additional detection results based on additional analyses.
Note 3: In light of the fact that detection limits vary among the businesses, when no PCBs were detected, the detection limits were classified in the corresponding categories of PCB density for counting purposes.
(Example: When the detection limit is 5 ppm and no PCBs are detected, the PCB density of the analyzed item is regarded as 5 ppm.)
- Appendix 1: Administrative guidance issued on February 13, 2012(PDF:269KB) (in Japanese)
- Appendix 2:Organic pigments that were found to contain 50 ppm or more of PCBs as by-products (PDF:55KB) (in Japanese)
- Reference material 1:Organic Pigments That Can Unintentionally Contain Polychlorinated Biphenyl (News Release on February 10, 2012)
- Reference material 2:Summarized Results of the First Investigation into the Presence of Polychlorinated Biphenyl (PCB) as By-products in Organic Pigments (News Release on May 28, 2012)
August 30, 2012
Division in Charge
Chemical Safety Office, Chemical Management Policy Division, Manufacturing Industries Bureau