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Sweden - Final Regulatory Action
Paraquat CAS number:
Date circular:

Chemical name: 4,4'-Bipyridinium, 1,1'-dimethyl-

Final regulatory action has been taken for the category: Pesticide

Final regulatory action: The chemical is Banned

Use or uses prohibited by the final regulatory action:

All uses of paraquat as a pesticide.

Pesticide use or uses that remain allowed:


The final regulatory action was based on a risk or hazard evaluation: Yes

Summary of the final regulatory action:

Paraquat was banned in Sweden in 1983 due to its acute high toxicity, risk for irreversible effects on heath and for accidents during handling and use of the substance.

The reasons for the final regulatory action were relevant to: Human health and environment

Summary of known hazards and risks to human health:

For the toxicological profile of paraquat and effects on human health, see section 1.8.2
In Sweden two serious intoxications were registered since 1975, one boy acquired permanent eye damage from getting concentrated solution of paraquat in the face and one young man died 10 days after ingestion of paraquat for suicidal purpose. The rather common situation where suicidal attempts are not truly seriously meant where noted in the background dossier and the absence of an antidote or efficient treatment to paraquat intoxication. The high risks of accidental poisoning for agricultural workers were also stated as a reason for the regulatory action. This referred both to accidents due to the high acute toxicity of paraquat and the possibility of adverse lung effects after long-term low dose exposure. The background dossier gave reference to the high number of know cases of intoxications by paraquat and the risks for additional such cases in Sweden was considered too high. The background information also referred to several cases where single or repeated dermal exposure resulted in mortal intoxication. Some examples of intoxication after inhalation were also noted although there was scarce evidence of permanent lung-damage. As described in section 1.8.2 later studies have however confirmed the presence of adverse effects on human health after long-term low dose exposure to paraquat.

Expected effect of the final regulatory action in relation to human health:

Risk reduction in the agricultural sector.

Summary of known hazards and risks to the environment:

The high persistence of paraquat in soil and sediment and possible effects on sediment dwelling organisms is a matter of concern, but the regulatory action was mainly due to risks for adverse effects on human health an occupational safety.

Date of entry into force of the final regulatory action: 31/12/1983