Priority Existing Chemical assessments

A priority existing chemical (PEC) is an industrial chemical that has been identified as requiring an assessment because there are reasonable grounds for believing that manufacturing, handling, storing, using or disposing of the chemical could be a risk to health and/or the environment.

Following a chemical assessment by NICNAS, there could be changes in circumstances that would later require particular aspects of a chemical to be re-assessed. This process is called secondary notification and assessment.

Read more about priority existing chemicals

Most PEC assessments are accompanied by an easy-to-understand fact sheet which summarises key recommendations for a non-scientific audience.

List of PECs

The assessments are in alphabetical order by chemical or trade name. Click on a letter in the list or use the page links. A name that begins with a number can be found in 1,2,3...

Chemical/trade name: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 1,2,3...

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Click on the chemical/trade name to download the scientific assessment.


para-Dichlorobenzene - PEC13 [WORD 2.5 MB]

CAS number(s): 106-46-7

Published 1 December 2000

para-Dichlorobenzene (p-DCB) was declared a priority existing chemical for full assessment on 7 April 1998 (PEC/13). The declaration of p-DCB was in response to concerns relating to possible human health risks and environmental hazards associated with the widespread use of the material in school and public toilet blocks and urinals and as an air freshener.

For a summary of the assessment read the p-DCB fact sheet.


Polybrominated flame retardants (PBFRs) - PEC20 [WORD 649 KB]

CAS number(s): 79-94-7; 126-72-7; 5412-25-9; 1163-19-5; 63936-56-1; 32536-52-0; 36483-60-0; 32534-81-9; 40088-47-9; 49690-94-0; 59447-57-3; 88497-56-7; 21850-44-2; 67990-32-3; 37853-59-1; 25357-79-3; 32588-76-4; 25637-99-4; 77098-07-8; 19186-97-1; 125997-20-8; 68928-70-1; 94334-64-2; 71342-77-3; 13654-09-6; 67888-96-18X; 60044-24-8; 92-86-4; 2052-07-5

Published 1 June 2001

Polybrominated flame retardants (PBFRs) including polybrominated biphenyls (PBBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDPEs) were declared priority existing chemicals for preliminary assessment as a group on 7 March 2000 (PEC/20). The declaration was due to concerns over the bioaccumulative and persistent nature of some PBFRs and therefore potential to impact adversely on the environment and human health.

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Last update 19 September 2019