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ERA's Environmental Compliance Management Blog

Our EH&S blog is your go-to source for industry news, advice, and compliance information. With each post, our team of experts (advanced degree holders in chemistry, environmental science, management, and more) maps out today’s most pressing EH&S issues. We also try to keep things interesting!

We’re committed to helping companies like yours maintain safe, efficient, environmentally-conscious operations. Use the buttons below to find EH&S blog posts that match your specific interests. And if you don’t see the type of content you need, please let us know!

How to Read an SDS: Understanding your Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for Safe Handling

Posted by Francis Haley

What is Your SDS Telling You About the Product You Are Using?

When working with hazardous materials, it is important to be alert to the specific nature of the dangers that are posed by those materials. This also means it is important to identify and differentiate one hazardous material from another in order to effectively apply precautionary measures. Knowing how to read an SDS is a must for both managers, executives, their employees.

Health & Safety professionals know that the ability to understand and read a Safety Data Sheet (SD) is a fundamental skill for any workplace committed to employee safety.

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Also posted in: SDS

GHS Compliance: Insider Guide to GHS in North America

Posted by Alexandra McDougall

The Globally Harmonized System (known as GHS for short) has introduced profound changes to the way North America as a whole classifies and communicates hazard information in the workplace and to consumers.

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Also posted in: SDS

GHS Compliance Spotlight: Aerosols under WHMIS 2015 and OSHA 2012

Posted by Nour Ghazal

Manufacturers around the globe have noticed an uptick in the demand for aerosol products – and if you are a user of aerosol products or a manufacturer, you might find yourself surprised at how the switch in North America to the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) has affected the requirements for workplace safety compliance. Our chemical safety specialists have taken a deep-dive into these regulations and this article will give you a straight-forward and condensed guide with everything you need to know.

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Also posted in: SDS, SDS Document Management, SDS Authoring, GHS

GHS Transition – Enforcement and Lessons to be Learnt

Posted by Lorcan Archer

In our last blog article in this series, we looked at how the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) will be implemented in Canada, and which key dates to pay particular attention to.

We have also covered how American companies, even those that have transitioned to the new SDS format, may fall into non-compliance due to this Canadian transition.

This article will examine the actual steps that Health Canada may take to compel companies towards adoption, as well as taking a broader look at the specific stumbling blocks lessons that can learnt from the United States’ GHS adaption.

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Also posted in: SDS

Canada's GHS / SDS Adoption - The Deadlines That Matter

Posted by Lorcan Archer

In our last blog article in this series, we examined how the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) may present difficulties for American companies, especially in terms of SDS use.

For this piece, we’ll take an informed look at the various deadlines that will signpost Canada’s transition, giving you the best possible overview of this complex changeover. You’ll learn which GHS deadlines affect your business, and what to should expect over the coming months.
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Also posted in: SDS

5 Ways Canada's GHS Adoption Could Trip Up Your SDS Management

Posted by Lorcan Archer

In our last blog article in this series, we looked at how the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) is being embraced by Canada. We offered a broad outline of the situation, and the reasons why the system is now being implemented.


For this piece, we’ll take an informed look into more of the particulars, unearthing 5 key details in US/Canadian policy differences that could become potential pitfalls for companies looking to continue to smoothly export products to Canada.

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Also posted in: SDS

SDS Authoring - Canada's Move Towards GHS Adoption

Posted by Lorcan Archer

The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and labeling of Chemicals (GHS) is exactly what it sounds like – an internationally recognized labeling system for dangerous chemicals. The images that comprise it are present on products we all buy and use every day. 

The GHS was created by the United Nations as an internationally applicable set of labels and indicators for classifying hazardous materials and the risks associated with their use.

Initially begun in 1992, the GHS has been fully developed and implemented by an increasing number of countries, most notably in the United States, where it was introduced as the mandatory standard in 2015. Importantly, adaption of GHS in the US has led to the replacement of the venerable Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) with the newer Safety Data Sheets (SDS).

Now, it’s Canada’s turn. The deadline for phase one adoption is set for June, 2017.

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Also posted in: SDS

Looming OSHA Fines Make SDS Software Essential

Posted by Alex Chamberlain

GHS_Grace_Period_Blog_Image.pngAt this moment, many enterprises are not in compliance in with the OSHA adoption of the Globally Harmonized System (GHS) which mandates that MSDSs must be replaced with the new Safety Data Sheets (SDS). This change in chemical hazard communication marked a significant change in on-site safety and chemical management – but an alarming number of businesses have missed the 2015 deadline.

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Also posted in: SDS

Watch: GHS Compliance and HazCom Changes - Whose Responsibility is it?

Posted by Alex Chamberlain

When OSHA made the decision to adopt the GHS guidelines for chemical hazard communication standards (deadline: June 1, 2015) it rolled out a series of changes to MSDSs and product labels.

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Also posted in: SDS

GHS Compliance Deadline: OSHA’s Stance on Enforcement

Posted by Alex Chamberlain

With the GHS Compliance deadline (June 1, 2015) in the U.S. already passed, it’s worth familiarizing yourself with OSHA’s (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) position on enforcing the deadline.

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Also posted in: SDS