Category Archives: News

Together against EDCs: Sign the petition now!

bodyA broad coalition of 27 not-for-profit organisations in France are calling on the French government to adopt an ambitious strategy to reduce exposure of populations and ecosystems to endocrine disruptors.

The signatories comprise a diverse coalition of French civil society groups, including environmental groups, health insurance bodies, patients groups, consumers, unions and women’s groups.

The public petition, backed by a manifesto, reaffirms the need to act quickly and consistently on EDCs.

Sign the petition here

View the manifesto here

Sign the petition: Phase out hazardous chemicals in medical devices

HCWH petitionHealth Care Without Harm Europe (HCWH) has launched a petition demanding the European Parliament to phase our the use of hazardous chemicals in medical devices.

Now is the time to act! The Parliament, Commission and Council of the EU are currently revising the legislation for medical devices and they need to know that we care about our health and that of our families.

HCWH Europe is demanding EU decision makers to put in place mechanisms to move towards a toxic-free European healthcare system.

Sign the petition now to show your support!

Chemicals in children’s food

The International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) recently launched a statement on the presence of toxic substances and chemical residues in food. Children are particularly vulnerable to the effects of exposure to chemicals as they are at the most sensitive stages of human development.

Parents, carers and health professionals are rightly worried about the problems in infant and young child feeding in a contaminated world, and the statement contains independent information on the risks and dangers of this form of environmental pollution.

IBFAN urgently calls upon decision makers in industry and politics to adopt environmentally-friendly initiatives in production and waste-disposal, to promote awareness of ecological dangers, and to create the appropriate legal framework to prevent the harmful contamination of our environment and to protect the health of our children, both present and future generations.

Read the 2013 Statement on Infant and Young Child Feeding and Chemical Residues here

Post provided by Campaign Secretariat HEAL


89 scientists call for EU action on EDCs

On 24 May a group of the world’s leading scientific experts on endocrine disrupting chemicals made the strongest ever call for regulatory action on endocrine disrupting chemicals with the launch of “The 2013 Berlaymont Declaration on Endocrine Disrupters”.

The Declaration makes an urgent plea to the EU Commission “to implement regulatory measures that are in line with the best available science”. It says that “scientific uncertainty should not delay regulatory action and commercial interests must not take precedent over concerns about risks associated with endocrine disruptors”.

 The 89 signatories to the Declaration point to alarming signs of a growing public health burden in Europe. The prevalence of endocrine-related diseases is higher than it has ever been and that this disease burden continues to increase in the EU and globally.

Download the 2013 Berlaymont Declaration on Endocrine Disrupters signatories here

Read HEAL’s response to the Berlaymont Declaration here

Post provided by campaign secretariat HEAL

Hazardous chemicals in medical devices in Bisphenol A and Phthalates

Campaign partner Health Care without Harm (HCWH) has recently published two fact sheets on hazardous chemicals in medical devices.

The first factsheet focuses on Bisphenol A in medical devices which has been shown to leach from medical devices containing PVC. BPA is left behind after the manufacturing process and from dental sealants in normal conditions of use. It is of paramount importance to avoid all possible sources of exposure to BPA, given the extensive presence of it in the environment. This factsheet highlights some examples of BPA applications in medical devices and steps to move towards PVC free healthcare.   Read the factsheet here

The second factsheet focuses on phthalates in medical devices which area group of chemical substances, primarily used as plasticisers (softeners) in plastics. They are abundant in PVC based medical devices such as blood bags, tubing, catheters and disposable gloves, where they can account to up to 40% of the final product. The factsheet highlights the risks from phthalates and the fact they can easily be released, transferred or leached into the air, water or body fluids during their production, use and discard as they are not chemically bound to plastic materials. Read the factsheet here

Post provided by campaign partner HCWH

New CHEM Trust papers out now!

CHEM Trust Briefing on the REACH review of EDCs, May 2013
The EU chemical legislation REACH mandates the EU Commission to review, before June 2013, whether a threshold or non-threshold approach to industrial chemicals with endocrine disrupting (ED) properties should be adopted within the REACH authorization procedure. In CHEM Trust’s EDCs should be treated as non-threshold substances equivalent to chemicals with PBT/vPvBa properties and this briefing explains why. Read the briefing here

 CHEM Trust critique of the UK Government Position on EDCs, May 2013
This briefing outlines CHEM Trust’s comments on the UK’s view on the issue of whether or not a threshold can be determined for endocrine disruptors identified as Substances of Very High Concern under REACH.  CHEM Trust does not agree with the UK Government’s position. Read the briefing here

CHEM Trust & HEAL’s briefing on the report of the Endocrine Disruptor Expert Advisory Group (ED EAG)
This briefing covers many important issues including potency, the linking of endocrine activity with adverse effects and tests for EDCs. Read the briefing here

CHEM Trust’s critique of the EFSA Opinion on EDCs, March 2013 Whilst there is much in the report that CHEM Trust can agree with, we disagree with the synthesis of the report which fails to conclude that current science highlights the need for urgent regulatory action and also fails to highlight that existing legislation (eg for pesticides) and the uncertainties in the risk assessment of EDCs mean that a hazard based approach should be adopted. Read the briefing here

 Post provided by campaign partner CHEM Trust

Global community agrees to phase out toxic flame retardant

Campaign partner Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) is glad to announce that the highly toxic flame retardant HBCD will be phased out globally! On 10 May, at the 6th Conference of Parties of the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants in Geneva, the global community agreed to phase out Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) – a highly toxic brominated flame retardant widely used in building insulation, upholstery and electronics in the EU, despite severe adverse effects on the development of the nervous system and mental abilities of children.

This chemical has become the 23rd substance to be globally banned under the Stockholm Convention and is an important step towards a toxic free future. Yet, although many countries proposed this global ban without any exemption, the EU fought to obtain an exemption for its production and use in insulation material and an authorization to recycle products containing the substance until 2024, in contravention of the text of the Convention and EU implementing legislation, which clearly forbids the recycling of persistent organic pollutants.

Read WECF´s full press release here


Post provided by campaign partner WECF

WECF presses on banning BPA in children toys during EU discussions

Campaign partner Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) presses for a complete ban on BPA and other chemicals in children toys instead of limiting thier use in products as planned by the EU Commission. 

Exposure to BPA, which has low dose effects especially in children, can alter the sensitive hormonal balance in developing bodies and can cause long-standing negative health effects. Therefore, it should be banned, instead of limited.

The same counts for other substances which can be found in consumer products and toys, such as lead and nickel. Since the early 1990s, it has been known that low levels of lead in blood can have adverse health effects, and it has not been possible to establish a threshold for lead toxicity.

More information available here

Post provided by campaign partner WECF