Local Leaders Learn GHS Strategies on Chemical Hazards and Precautionary Labels

. Global initiatives
towards the proper management of chemicals have gradually made its way at the
local scene as about 80 people from various sectors in Quezon City attended the
training on chemical hazards and proper labeling.
EcoWaste Coalition, in partnership with the Board of Investments (BOI), a
government agency attached to the Department of Trade and Industry, and
the National Movement of Young Legislators (NMYL), has conducted a workshop on
the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling of
Chemicals at the Barangay Hall of Barangay Damayan, San Francisco del Monte,
Quezon City.
GHS is a new-fangled,
internationally-approved system for chemical hazard communication, which
includes harmonized chemical hazard classification standards and requirements
for standardized labels and safety data sheets.
participants – barangay leaders and officials – came from different barangays
in Quezon City.
training seeks to inform local leaders about the physical, health and
environmental hazards of chemicals, consequently introducing them about GHS and
its practical applications to our everyday lives,” said Coun. Doray Delarmente
of Quezon City, National President of NMYL.
knowledge about chemical regulatory systems like GHS will enable our local
leaders to create a local implementation plan for GHS that will possibly allow us
to implement such policy in our areas of jurisdiction,” she added.
City is one of the most dynamic cities in the country in terms of investment
and trade promotion. According to its official website, “Quezon City was regarded as the
most competitive city in Metro Manila and the second most competitive city in
the Philippines, based on the responses of businessmen surveyed by the Asian
Institute of Management in 2007.”
It will
be advantageous to the fiscal stability and economic growth of the city if GHS will
be implemented as it will trim down health care costs, improve workers’
protection and reduce the likelihood of industrial disasters due to improper
handling of chemicals.
schemes will help increase the profits of local businesses and industries as
costs of enforcement and compliance with hazard communication regulations will
be significantly reduced since the possibility of having duplicative testing of
chemicals on commercial products will be avoided. GHS labeling will also enhance
corporate image and integrity.
chemist Tess Corpuz mentioned in her presentation, “the GHS provides
information about the hazards of chemicals, thereby helping consumers determine
appropriate safety precautions needed in handling these chemicals.”
internationally consistent GHS includes distinguishable chemical hazard
classification, user-friendly labeling system, and instructive hazard
information on labels and safety data sheets,” she said.
Under the
standardized scheme for chemical labeling, a GHS label includes a symbol or
pictogram, signal word (e.g. “danger,” “warning”) and hazard statement (e.g.
“fatal if swallowed,” “toxic if swallowed,” “harmful if swallowed,” “may be
harmful if swallowed”). 
Other important
GHS label information includes the product identifier, supplier identification
and the relevant precautionary statement/s.  
hazardous chemicals, including pure substances as well as dilute solutions and
mixtures, are covered by the GHS.
The Quezon
City workshop organized by the EcoWaste Coalition, just like the ones held
in Gapan City, Nueva Ecija and Cebu City, Cebu last November 8 and 23,
respectively, are financed by the United Nations Institute for Training and
Research (UNITAR) under the BOI-UNITAR GHS Project.


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