Italy updates mandatory Occupational Exposure Limit Values for Chemical Agents

Posted on: June 25, 2020

by Susana Planas MunGavin, MSc

man in protective gear working with chemicals - Italy updates mandatory Occupational Exposure Limit Values for Chemical AgentsIn May 2, 2020, the Ministry of Labor adopted an Interministerial Decree for the substitution of Annex XXXVIII to Legislative Decree 81 of April 9, 2008. The Decree was published on May 19, 2020 in the Official Gazette General Series of the Republic number 128.  With this, Directive 2017/164/EU of January 31, 2017 approving the Fourth List of Indicative Occupational Exposure Limit Values (IOELVs) has been largely incorporated into Italy’s legislative framework.  The Decree contains over 30 new binding OELVs and has updated many existing values. It also approved a transitional period for the application of the limit values for Nitrogen monoxide and Nitrogen dioxide used in underground mining and tunnelling activities and for Carbon monoxide used in underground mining only. The transitional period will end on August 21, 2023.

Occupational limit values are adopted within the legislative framework set out under Law 123 of August 3, 2007 on Health and Safety in the Workplace.  Further, Decree 81 provides the legally binding occupational exposure limit values for chemical agents in the workplace under Annex Title IX, Annexes XXXVIII and XIII concerning chemical agents.

As stated under the Ministerial Decree of August 20, 1999, when the Italian legislation does not provide a mandatory OEL value for a chemical agent, the Threshold Limit Values (TLVs) adopted by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) and translated in Italian by the Italian Association of Industrial Hygienist (AIDII) are to be implemented and complied within workplaces.

AIDII is a scientific association, promoting the progress and diffusion of industrial, or occupational hygiene and environmental protection through training, research, scientific dissemination and the promotion of regulatory measures, legislative and technical.

TLVs and Biological Exposure Indices are published annually by the ACGIH. The 2019 edition of the ACGIH TLVs was officially translated by the AIDII into Italian and published and distributed to its members in December 2019.


Legislative Decree 81 of April 9, 2008. Published in the Ordinary Supplement of the Official Gazette on April 30, 2008.

Decree of May 2, 2020 on the Substitution of Annex XXXVIII by Interministerial Decree – Definition of a fourth list of indicative occupational exposure values in implementation of Council Directive 98/24/EC.

Directive 2017/164/EU of January 31, 2017 approving the Fourth List of Indicative Occupational Exposure Limit Values (IOELVs).


Italy, European Union, Occupational Exposure Limits, Chemical Agents

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