Chemicals of security concern

A wide range of readily available chemicals are used by individuals and businesses every day throughout Australia.

Of the approximately 40 000 chemicals approved for use in Australia, 96 chemicals were identified by the Council of Australian Governments as requiring attention because of their potential for misuse by terrorists. These are known as chemicals of security concern.

Our department is responsible for the implementation of the Agreement on Australia’s National Arrangements for the Management of Security Risks Associated with Chemicals. This agreement governs the development and implementation of measures to enhance the security of chemicals.

We work together with other Australian, state and territory government agencies to ensure businesses and the community are aware of chemical security risks and appropriate risk management processes are made.

National Code of Practice for Chemicals of Security Concern

The Australian Government, together with state and territory governments, businesses and industry sectors, developed a National Code of Practice for Chemicals of Security Concern. The code helps businesses prevent potentially dangerous chemicals finding their way into the hands of terrorists.

The code was launched in July 2013 and is based on good business practices that prevent the loss and theft of chemicals. It encourages organisations to consider and examine their own risks from a national security perspective and to take steps to reduce risks to ensure that chemicals are not stolen or diverted for terrorist purposes.

Consultation on 84 toxic chemicals of security concern

The Australian Government invited submissions on draft policy options to reduce the national security risks posed by 84 toxic chemicals of security concern.

The options for consultation are set out in a Regulation Impact Statement (RIS), along with preliminary analysis on the costs and benefits of each option.

The RIS is relevant to importers, distributors, transporters, universities, hospitals, local councils, farmers, pest controllers, hardware stores and any other business that manufactures, handles or uses any of the 84 toxic chemicals of security concern.