Occupational Exposure Limits: A Comparative Study
2008 (English)In: Regulatory toxicology and pharmacology, ISSN 0273-2300, E-ISSN 1096-0295, Vol. 50, no 2, 261-270 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Occupational exposure limits (OELs) are used as an important regulatory instrument to protect workers' health from adverse effects of chemical exposures. The OELs mirror the outcome of the risk assessment and risk management performed by the standard setting actor. In this study we compared the OELs established by 18 different organisations or national regulatory agencies. The OELs were compared with respect to: (1) what chemicals have been selected and (2) the average level of exposure limits for all chemicals. Our database contains OELs for a total of 1341 substances; of these 25 substances have OELs from all 18 organisations while more than one-third of the substances are only regulated by one organisation. The average level of the exposure limits has declined during the past 10 years for 6 of the 8 organisations in our study for which historical data were available; it has increased for Poland and remained nearly unchanged for Sweden. The average level of OELs differs substantially between organisations; the US OSHA exposure limits are (on average) nearly 40 % higher than those of Poland. The scientific or policy-related motivations for these differences remain to be analysed.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier , 2008. Vol. 50, no 2, 261-270 p.
occupational exposure limits, risk assessment, risk management, chemicals regulation, ACGIH
Pharmacology and Toxicology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-9766DOI: 10.1016/j.yrtph.2007.12.004ISI: 000254036000021ScopusID: 2-s2.0-39149085645OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-9766DiVA: diva2:127813
QC 201011012008-12-102008-12-102011-02-15Bibliographically approved