Vol. 149, No. 3 — February 11, 2015
SI/2015-5 February 11, 2015
ECONOMIC ACTION PLAN 2014 ACT, NO. 1
Order Fixing the Day on which this Order is published as the Day on which Certain Sections of the Act Come into Force
P.C. 2015-34 January 29, 2015
His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Health, pursuant to section 162 of the Economic Action Plan 2014 Act, No. 1, chapter 20 of the Statutes of Canada, 2014, fixes the day on which this Order is published in the Canada Gazette, Part II, as the day on which sections 110 to 138 and 146 to 159 of that Act come into force.
(This note is not part of the Order.)
This Order fixes the day on which this Order is published in the Canada Gazette, Part II, as the day on which sections 110 to 138 and 146 to 159 of the Economic Action Plan 2014 Act, No. 1 come into force.
This Order will bring into force the legislative amendments necessary to fulfill the commitment made by the Prime Minister in 2011 to implement the Globally Harmonized System of Labelling and Classification of Chemicals (GHS) in Canada.
The Canada–United States Regulatory Cooperation Council (RCC) was announced in February 2011 by the Prime Minister of Canada and the President of the United States. One of its key objectives is the facilitation of trade between the two countries. In December 2011, one of 29 initiatives announced as part of the RCC Joint Action Plan was the coordinated implementation of the GHS for workplace hazardous chemicals. Specifically, Canada and the United States agreed to “align and synchronize implementation of common classification and labelling requirements for workplace hazardous chemicals within the mandate of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Health Canada (HC)” by implementing the GHS in Canada.
Legislative and regulatory amendments are required in order to implement the GHS in Canada. Legislative amendments were included in the Economic Action Plan 2014 Act, No. 1, and received royal assent in June 2014. These amendments
- Align definitions in the Hazardous Products Act with those used in the United States;
- Make technical changes to regulatory authorities as they relate to classification criteria and hazard communication;
- Broaden the regulatory authorities provided by the Hazardous Products Act;
- Adjust definitions and terminology in the Hazardous Materials Information Review Act, and make coordinating amendments; and
- Update and strengthen compliance and enforcement tools available under the Hazardous Products Act.
Applying the GHS to Canada’s hazard communication system for workplace hazardous chemicals, and doing so in alignment with the approach being taken by the United States, Canada’s major trading partner, not only reduces costs for industry and facilitates trade, but also keeps Canada on pace with the global standard for such systems. The benefits are clear:
- Canadian industry will start seeing quantified benefits ($82 million) as soon as the fourth year of implementation. The benefits associated with imports and exports will be seen even earlier because of advanced implementation in other countries. The net benefits for the Canadian government and industry are estimated to be $391.6 million (present value) over the next 20 years.
- The training of workers will be more efficient and effective, bringing increased health and safety benefits.
- It is anticipated that workplaces in Canada will be safer and hundreds of potential workplace injuries will be prevented.
- The harmonization of the Canadian workplace hazardous chemicals classification system with those of virtually all of its trading partners, including the United States, will facilitate trade.
Health Canada has consulted widely with key partners and stakeholders, who have expressed support for the implementation of the GHS in Canada. Industry is particularly supportive of this work, and has been encouraging timely action along these lines. Because the United States is closer to full implementation, suppliers would like Canada to implement the GHS as soon as possible in order to minimize the amount of time needed for two separate classification and hazard communication systems to be in place.
Please refer to the Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement submitted with the Hazardous Products Regulations for more information on GHS implementation.
Workplace Hazardous Materials Directorate
Department of Health
Postal Locator 4903E
269 Laurier Avenue West, 3rd Floor