Liaisons with international bodies
All the Commission’s materials are translated into English. This enables international dissemination of the Commission’s work and close cooperation with international bodies. This has been of great importance in the past, particularly in relation to the activities of the European hazardous substances committee – the EU Commission’s Scientific Committee on Occupational Exposure Limits (SCOEL), under the Directorate-General for Labour and Social Affairs.
For this reason, two of the Commission’s members were also members of SCOEL. Following the dissolution of SCOEL in spring 2019, which was regrettable from the scientific point of view, this cooperation will continue with the Risk Assessment Committee (RAC) of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), to which the Chair of the Commission was appointed in 2019. In connection with implementation of the REACH regulation which came into force in 2007, the threshold limit values are now set by manufacturers themselves and not independently. When it comes to important substances with relevant exposures, substances that are difficult to evaluate and highly complex data in particular, assessment by an independent, scientifically oriented commission is vital to the responsible political authorities. After the dissolution of SCOEL, the MAK Commission is now the only remaining body in Europe able to perform this function.
In May 2021, Professor Dr. Andrea Hartwig, the Chair of the Permanent Senate Commission for the Investigation of Health Hazards of Chemical Compounds in the Work Area (MAK Commission) was appointed to join the Expert Group High Level Roundtable on the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability of the European Union to represent the KIT as a scientific member.
The MAK Commission also works closely with the Dutch Expert Committee on Occupational Safety of the Gezondheidsraad (Health Council) of the Netherlands and the TLV Chemical Substances Committee of the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH).
In view of the fact that the Commission’s work is very relevant to the Spanish-speaking world, the MAK and BAT list has been published in a Spanish version in cooperation with the Instituto Nacional de Seguridad e Higiene en el Trabajo (INHT) since 2017.