LIFE VERMEER is an advanced project
for the substitution of risky substances
which integrates hazard evaluation
with exposure assessment for human
and environment.

LIFE VERMEER project is placed in the LIFE program, which is the EU’s funding instrument for the environment. The general objective of LIFE is to contribute to the implementation, updating and development of EU environmental policy and legislation by co-financing pilot or demonstration projects with European added value.

Currently, the substitution of hazardous substances is done exploring manually a limited number of candidates, which often lack of information about the (eco)toxicological and environmental properties. Furthermore, the different European regulations related to chemicals, the absence of formalized procedure and the many possible processes for the substitution, results in a highly inefficient situation.

The challenge of LIFE VERMEER is to propose a comprehensive platform for products, media and regulations. This platform will derive from an integrated combination of existing software, providing solutions for the Environmental and Human Health Risk Assessment.

In particular LIFE VERMEER will be based on MERLIN-Expo for multi-stressors, multi-target and multi-route exposure, on VEGA for assess multi-endpoint hazard, for the risk aggregation on ERICA and for the identification of structural alerts in the substitution strategy by ToxRead.

The platform will provide new, freely available tools able to suggest candidate substitutes for risky chemicals (ToxEraser) and merge hazard evaluation with exposure assessment (Life SPHERA).

The validation will be based on the following six case-studies:

  • Food contact material
  • Solvents
  • Dispersants
  • Cosmetics
  • Biocides
  • Green solvents

Project time table


    Analysis of information technology characteristic of the existing software (VEGA, MERLIN-Expo).

    Life Sphera

    Implementation of VEGA and MERLIN-Expo to obtain the assessment evaluation with the associated uncertainty in the new software Life Sphera.
    Tox Eraser

    Definition and implementation of the Tox Eraser concept which reduces chemical risk suggesting suitable substitutes.

    Integration of the two software into ERICA and validation of the software with 6 case studies.

    Monitoring the environmental and health impact of the case studies and assessment of the socio-economic impact of the project.

    Planned publication and dissemination activities through workshops, webinars and face-to-face training session.