Managing climate change regulations in an evolving landscape

The regulatory landscape is ever-shifting, with revised laws on EHS and compliance driving businesses to craft new strategies for tracking and maintaining compliance and sustainability. Here’s a recap of some of the trending topics in the environmental sector.

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by Mary Foley

The regulatory landscape is ever-shifting, with revised laws on EHS and compliance driving businesses to craft new strategies for tracking and maintaining compliance and sustainability. In our recent webinar, Managing EHS risk in changing regulatory landscapes, expert Mary Foley explored the challenges clients are facing worldwide. 

Here’s a recap of some of the trending topics in the environmental sector, covering regulations on climate change and chemical management, and what these mean for businesses around the globe.

Climate change 

In attempts to mitigate the dangers of climate change, many regions and countries around the world have published new legislation to reduce the quantity of toxic gases permeating the atmosphere.  

These new laws — some of which come into mandatory effect within the next decade — will change how businesses can produce and deliver their products around the world, with increasing emphasis on using green energy and renewable resources.


Aiming for a 55% emissions cut of greenhouse gases (GHG) by 2030 and a 65-90% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2040, the EU’s European Green Deal outlines the plan to become climate neutral by 2050.  

Alongside those goals, the Fit for 55 package details:


Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism 

A tool used to generate a price on the carbon emitted during the manufacturing of products entering the EU.


Revised Energy Efficiency Directive 

Raised the EU energy efficiency target, enforcing a collaboration with all EU countries to reduce their energy consumption by 2030. 


Revised Renewable Energy Directive 

A framework for developing clean energy across the EU economy, with a new target of at least 42.5% renewable energy by 2030.  

These proposals will have an impact on companies around the globe, as new mandates will be put in place to monitor the negative environmental impacts of businesses.


A climate change regulation created in response to new legislation has been enacted in Vietnam as part of the country’s plan on green energy transformation and the reduction of air emissions.  

Within this new legislation, companies are not permitted to import or use equipment using fossils fuels from 2040. Furthermore, all loading and unloading equipment emitting fossil fuels will be switched to equipment that solely uses electricity and green energy by 2050. Businesses will be encouraged to only use vehicles with green energy for all transportation moving forward. 

This could be a startling change for companies that rely heavily on fossil fuel motorized vehicles.

Sri Lanka 

A draft of the National Policy on Climate Change has been published in Sri Lanka, providing measures to: 

  • Enhance the usage of green, renewable energy resources 
  • Introduce economic incentives for less carbon-intensive fuels and technology 
  • Promote a circular economy 
  • Instigate a carbon tax to control GHG emissions 

Businesses that operate in these jurisdictions will need to prepare new processes and transportation for their day-to-day operations, to avoid breaking legislation.


Under the Biden Administration, a National Climate Task Force has been organized with the long-term goals of reducing GHG emissions by 50-52% by 2030 and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.  

The EPA’s budget for 2024 has stated that they’re urgently prioritizing climate change. Its established Climate Pollution Reduction Grants enable US states to devise funding measures to reduce GHG emissions. Currently, more than 30 states are developing climate action plans to contribute.  

Additionally, a new concept entitled Environmental Justice, has been conceived to focus on overburdened communities in the country, with states like Minnesota, Colorado, and Texas taking action in the form of permit application requirements.

Chemical management 

In Europe, the Americas, and Asia, regulations to alleviate the dangers of chemicals have been announced, outlining new rules for companies to be aware of.


The Amendment to REACH in the EU has announced an additional 24 substances classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic, or toxic for reproduction. From 1 December 2023, these substances are no longer allowed to be supplied to the public but can continue to be used for professional purposes. 

A further understanding of REACH obligations has seen this concept extend from Europe to other parts of the world.


The EPA has proposed the amendment of procedural frameworks under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) for risk evaluations and advances in the environmental justice agenda. This federal proposal will impact manufacturers and importers of any chemicals regulated under TSCA. 

In Latin America, Chile’s deadline for REACH-inspired regulations is approaching in August 2024. In Colombia, the deadline is May 2025 for all covered substances. And in Brazil, there is now a REACH-inspired bill (PL 6120/2019) set before the Senate for consideration.


In China, there are four draft mandatory standards under consideration, each containing requirements on transport packaging, classification, and labeling.  

  1. Notice on Public Solicitation of Opinion on the Identification Standards for Solid Wastes-General Rules (Draft), published 10 January 2024 
  2. Secretariat of the National Food Safety Standards Review Committee’s Letter for Soliciting Opinion on 11 National Food Safety Standards, published 24 October 2023 
  3. Opinions on Public Consultation to Three Mandatory National Standards (Drafts for Approval) Including the Household and Similar Electrical Appliances – Safety Specification, published 23 November 2023 
  4. Proposal to the Food Safety National Standards Paint and Coating as Food Contact Use (GB 4806.10-2023), published 7 December 2023

Monitoring your compliance in a changing regulatory landscape

With so many new laws being published to protect the climate from further harm, it’s vital that businesses stay on top of their processes to ensure they’re meeting compliance and sustainability standards.  

If you missed the webinar, catch up with our recording. 

Download the webinar