Category Archives: News

NGO platform: Time for EU to act on endocrine disruptors

HEALer Lisette van Vliet from the EDC-Free campaign secretariat HEAL (Health and Environment Alliance) commented on the delay of the EU strategy on EDCs in a briefing by Chemical Watch.

Earlier this year UNEP and the WHO called EDCs a ‘global threat’ that need to be resolved. It is widely recognised that the EU’s EDCs strategy needs updating to take in account the advances in science as well as legislative developments.

Despite a thorough process of consultation on the EU’s strategy between the EU Commission, EU Member States, industry groups, public interest groups and other stakeholders, the publication of the review of the old strategy and its revision, has been delayed several times.

Since 1999 when the EU’s strategy was published, our knowledge about EDCs has grown. Now there is a body of science on the impacts of EDCs on health such as diabetes, obesity and early puberty as well as human biomonitoring evidence of EDC exposure showing that the public is constantly exposed, even before birth.

You can read the full Chemical Watch briefing here

The views expressed in contributed articles are those of the expert authors and are not necessarily shared by Chemical Watch.

Post provided by campaign secretariat HEAL

HEAL reacts to fracking and EDCs link

New evidence published in December prompted renewed calls from the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) for the EU environmental impact assessment to address shale gas fracking in Europe.

Research published in Endocrinology confirms fears that shale gas fracking can release harmful chemicals into the environment, and thereby menace public health, according to HEAL. Ensuring that the EU environmental impact assessment law includes shale gas activities is a crucial step towards addressing human health threats associated with the release of fracking chemicals.

Read more here

Post provided by campaign secretariat HEAL

PAN Europe co-hosts joint symposium: ’Yes we can feed Europe using less pesticides’

Pic PAN-Europe Newsflash Dec (282x400)In December campaign partner Pesticides Action Network Europe (PAN-E) co-hosted a joint symposium in the European Parliament to discuss the possibilities to feed Europe with less pesticides.

The objective of the symposium, co-hosted by PAN, the International Biocontrol Manufacturers Association (IBMA), and the International Organisation for Biological Control (IOBC) together with the Greens, PSE and EPP groups in the European Parliament, was to promote the implementation of crop protection methods in the framework of sustainable agriculture.

This debate was essential to facilitate the implementation of the EU Directive on Sustainable Use of Pesticides, especially since all EU farmers need to comply with the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) from 1 January 2014 onwards. IPM is a system approach to farming based on a combination of agronomic preventions bearing in mind that alternatives exist and that pesticides shall only be used as the last resort.

PAN-E press release available here

Post provided by campaign partner PAN-E

Noticias ‘Europa libre de disruptores endocrinos no.1 Diciembre 2013


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El mes pasado, diferentes organizaciones europeas integradas en la campaña “Europa libre de disruptores endocrinos” entregaban al presidente de la Comisión Europea un mural con imágenes de ciudadanos que reflejan la toxicidad de los disruptores endocrinos. Dichas organizaciones reclamaban acciones inmediatas para reducir la exposición a los disruptores endocrinos.

Más información aqui.


Las fotos fueron dispuestas en una imagen que retrata a Durao Barroso haciendo un signo “todo OK” , instando al Presidente a apoyar la acción urgente para reducir nuestra exposición a los disruptores endocrinos.


Socios de la Campaña pidieron a la Comisión poner fin a las “sustancias químicas que interfieren con el sistema hormonal”, sobre todo en los productos utilizados por los segmentos más vulnerables de la población, como los bebés y las mujeres embarazadas.

En la galería de fotos “EDC-Free Sin disruptores endocrinos” puedes ver todas las imágenes de la acción, así como las cientos de fotografías enviadas por ciudadanos y grupos.

¿Cómo actuar?

¡Ayúdanos a decir a tu gobierno que queremos un futuro libre de disruptores!.

Muestra tu preocupación sobre dónde pueden estar acechando los disruptores endocrinos enviándonos una foto o imagen de tus celebraciones navideñas o de fin de año. Estas fotos serán incluidas en la tarjeta de felicitación navideña que haremos llegar a Durao Barroso. ¡Por una Navidad sin disruptores!

Campagne EDC-Free Lettre d’info no.1 Décembre 2013

Les partenaires de la campagne EDC-Free mobilisés devant le siège de la Commission à Bruxelles pour exiger du Président Barroso une action urgente sur les Perturbateurs endocriniens (PE)

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Le mois dernier, les militants de EDC-Free Europe ont remis au cabinet du président de la Commission européenne, José Manuel Barroso, un collage de photos prises par des citoyens et des associations de toute l’Europe préoccupés par la façon dont les produits chimiques perturbateurs hormonaux, aussi appelés perturbateurs endocriniens, peuvent être néfastes pour la santé. Ils ont protesté contre le retard pris dans les travaux réglementaires et ont demandé une action immédiate pour réduire notre exposition aux perturbateurs endocriniens.

Plus d’informations en cliquant ici.


Les photos étaient disposées de façon à former une image du Président Barroso en train de faire un signe de la main « tout est OK ! » – afin de l’inviter à répondre positivement aux préoccupations citoyennes et à engager une action urgente de réduction de l’exposition humaine aux PE.


Les partenaires de la campagne ont demandé à la Commission de mettre un terme à notre exposition aux PE, en particulier dans les produits de consommation courante qui peuvent affecter les individus les plus vulnérables comme les bébés et les femmes enceintes.

Visitez la galerie photo EDC-Free pour visionner toutes les photos de l’action et les photos soumises par les citoyens et associations

Que pouvez-vous faire ?

Vous pouvez nous aider à interpeler les pouvoirs publics et exiger un avenir sans PE.

Participez à notre photo-pétition en chargeant vos photos sur le site ou en “likant” celles des autres inscrits dans la galerie EDC-free. Nous les ferons parvenir aux décideurs politiques.

La période des fêtes est propice aux photos : famille, amis, tous réclamons un Nouvel An sans PE !  Nous compilerons les photos pour envoyer une piqure de rappel à Barroso sous forme de carte de vœux!

Pour envoyer des photos, rendez-vous sur la page

Translation of EDC-Free campaign news by campaign partner Réseau Environnement Santé

EDC-Free campaign news no.1 December 2013

EDC-Free campaign partners mobilised in front of EU building in Brussels to ask EU Commission President Barroso for urgent action on EDCs

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Last month, EDC-Free Europe campaigners handed over to the cabinet of EU Commission President José Manuel Barroso, a colourful collage of photos by citizens and groups around Europe who are concerned about how hormone disrupting chemicals, also called EDCs, may be harming our health.  They asked for immediate action to bring out delayed proposals that would help reduce our exposure to EDCs.

More information can be found here.


The photos were arranged in a visual image portraying President Barroso making an “all OK” sign – in the hope that he will respond positively in supporting urgent action on EDCs to reduce our exposure.


pregnant womanCampaign partners asked the Commission to put a stop to “hormone disrupting chemicals”, particularly in products used by the most vulnerable, such as babies and pregnant women.

Visit the EDC-Free photo gallery to view all photos from the action and that have been uploaded by citizens and groups

What can YOU do?

You can help us let your governments know that we want an EDC-Free Future.

Upload a photo of your own, or simply like one of the photos in the EDC-Free gallery. We’ll take it to the decision makers.

Take action and send us your festive photos for an EDC-Free Holiday! They can then be included in a Seasons greeting card we are planning to send to Barroso!

Click here for how to take action!English - French - German - Spanish

Media photo op: Delays are wasting opportunities for prevention of chronic disease and healthcare savings

Press release available in English - French Spanish - German

Photo opportunity: Fifteen banner-carrying EDC-Free Europe campaigners will hand José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission a colourful collage of photos sent in by citizens and groups from across Europe illustrating concerns about just how pervasive endocrine disrupting chemicals may be in everyday products and our lives. The event takes place on Wednesday, 13 November at 8.30 am outside the European Commission building at Schuman.

 The photos are arranged in a visual image portraying President Barroso making an “all OK” sign – in the hope that he will respond positively in supporting urgent action on EDCs to reduce human exposure, particularly in products used by the most vulnerable, such as babies and pregnant women.

Barroso Mosaïque_under embargo


Delays are wasting opportunities for prevention of chronic disease and healthcare savings

Brussels, Wednesday 13 November – Fifteen EDC-Free Europe campaigners are presenting José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission with a huge EDC-Free poster today in an urgent call for action on endocrine disrupting chemicals.

The EDC-Free Europe coalition, made up of 50 partners representing hundreds of EU citizens’ organizations (1), has integrated dozens of photos from campaign activities across Europe into a poster portraying Barroso. They are calling on him to quickly bring forward delayed EDC policy proposals to better protect people’s health and prevent chronic diseases. The chronic disease associated with EDCs is a leading public health challenge and drain on the economy.

The campaign action today reiterates a call made in a letter to Barroso in May this year. (2) The letter called for an end to delays in regulatory action on endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), and immediate action to reduce people’s exposure.  The groups say that postponed decisions will unnecessarily prolong people’s exposure to these chemicals. Low-level, everyday exposures to EDCs disturb the human hormone system and have been linked to many serious chronic diseases that are increasing in incidence in Europe, such as breast cancer.

“It was democratically agreed by the European Parliament that scientific criteria for EDCs would be set by December this year. The European Commission’s recent decision to launch an impact assessment on criteria ignores the December deadline. Since when do scientific criteria get set by impact assessments? This move ignores the public will and goes against scientific recommendation,” says Lisette van Vliet, HEAL, one of the campaign partners in the coalition.

Scientists actively engaged in endocrine disruptor research made their position on the need for urgent action very clear earlier this year. In May 2013, 89 leading public health scientists from around the world signed the Berlaymont Declaration on endocrine disruptors, which calls on the European Commission to act. (3) They list EDC-related conditions as infertility, congenital malformations (and testicular cancer), breast cancer, prostate cancer, ADHD, obesity and diabetes, amongst others.

Industry pressure, rather than scientific controversy about the criteria to protect EU citizens from harmful EDCs, may be at the heart of why the decisions are being delayed.

In October, the Swedish and Danish ministers of Environment wrote to Janez Potčnik, the European environment commissioner expressing their concerns that an impact assessment would take socio-economic criteria into account, which they claimed is not within the scope of the biocidal products Regulation’s (BPR). (4)

“HEAL believes that the Commission has obtained ample scientific input and should stand up to industry bullying on the criteria. It should publish a revised strategy as soon as possible and ensure that REACH does not authorise chemicals that are hormone disruptors when safer alternatives exist,” Ms van Vliet adds.


Lisette van Vliet, HEAL Senior Policy Officer, email:  Tel: +32 2 234 3645, mobile: +32 484 614 528

Genon K. Jensen, Executive Director, Health and Environment Alliance, Tel: +32 2 234 3642, Mobile: +32 495 808 732, Email:

Diana Smith, HEAL Communications and Media Adviser,, mobile: +33 6 33 04 2943

Notes for journalists

1. EDC-Free Europe campaign has 50 signed-up members representing hundreds of groups throughout Europe, including trade unions, consumers, public health and healthcare professionals, and advocates for cancer prevention, environmentalists and women’s groups. Those in Brussels today will carry banners with the campaign message – STOP hormone disrupting chemicals and blown-up photos of suspect consumer items with arrows asking the question: “Is this disrupting me?” as well as the collage of many photos arranged in a visual image portraying President Barroso.

2. Joint NGO letter to President Barroso and Commissioners: Call to reduce our exposure to EDCs, 7 May 2013, )

3. The Berlaymont Declaration is available at…/heal-responds-to-berlaymont

4. Letter on EDCs to Commissioners Potočnik and Tajani from Swedish and Danish Ministers for the Environment, 30 October 2013, Letter and ChemSec press release at


The Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) is a leading European not-for-profit organisation addressing how the environment affects health in the European Union (EU). With the support of more than 65 member organisations, HEAL brings independent expertise and evidence from the health community to different decision-making processes. Our broad alliance represents health professionals, not-for-profit health insurers, doctors, nurses, cancer and asthma groups, citizens, women’s groups, youth groups, environmental NGOs, scientists and public health research institutes. Members include international and Europe-wide organisations, as well as national and local groups. Website:

Breast Cancer UK Manifesto: 5 pledges for 2015 and beyond towards the prevention of breast cancer

BCUK Manifesto front cover thumbnailOn 23 October campaign partner Breast Cancer UK (BCUK) launched its Manifesto ‘Prevention is better than cure: 5 pledges for 2015 and beyond towards the prevention of breast cancer’ calling on the UK Government ‘to stop breast cancer before it starts’.

Breast cancer rates in England have risen by 90% since 1971. Nearly 50,000 people are diagnosed with the disease every year.  Breast Cancer UK believes much more can be done to help prevent people from getting breast cancer in the first place – but currently the Government’s failure to address the chemical causes of the disease fundamentally weakens breast cancer prevention policy.

Breast Cancer UK’s 5 manifesto pledges are:

  1. Prioritise the primary prevention of breast cancer;
  2. Improve the regulation of chemicals;
  3. Protect the unborn child by offering advice to pregnant and breast feeding women;
  4. Ban the use of Bisphenol A in food and drinks packaging;
  5. Improve labelling laws and implement the ‘right to know’ what chemicals are in products.

BCUK have set up a Take Action asking supporters to write to their MPs asking them to pledge to prevent and support the Manifesto. To be part of this action, click here

Campaign partners HEAL, Cancer Prevention and Education Society, CHEMTrust and ClientEarth are supporters of the Manifesto. In 2005, BCUK and HEAL jointly published the report “Breast Cancer – an Environmental Disease: The Case for Primary Prevention” available here

Post provided by campaign secretariat HEAL