Category Archives: News

EU court hearing puts spotlight on Commission delay over EDCs

On 17 November, a crucial court hearing against the EU Commission took place. The EU Court of Justice in Luxembourg heard Sweden’s case against the Commission for failing to fulfill its legal obligations regarding EDCs.

Sweden’s anger erupted after the EU Commission missed its legal deadline to put forward criteria to identify EDCs by the end of 2013. The case is supported by the EU Council of governments, which is considered to be the highest political body of the EU. The European Parliament and three governments are individually backing Sweden. They are Denmark, France and the Netherlands.

The EU Commission is currently conducting an impact assessment partly prompted by intensive lobbying by the chemicals and pesticide industry. This is expected to delay the setting EU criteria for defining EDCs until 2017 at the earliest.

Press reactions from EDC-Free Europe campaign partners and supporters 

Media coverage

EU

  • ‘When is a deadline not a deadline’, POLITICO Pro Morning Health Care (subscription only)
  • EU court hears arguments in case over EDC criteria delay, Chemical Watch, 19 November 2015 (subscription only)
  • EDCs: Sweden vs. European CommissionFood Packaging Forum, 23 November 2015

Belgium

France

EDC-Free Europe meets with MEPs

A week ahead of the EU Court case, over 20 EDC-Free Europe campaign partners and supporters met with several MEPs to raise awareness about EDCs and the need for urgent EU action. A group meeting was organised between the coalition and MEP Michele Rivasi.

17112015 - Collage MEPs

 

Post provided by EDC-Free Secretariat HEAL and partners  

Pesticide Action Week 2016!

The 11th edition of Pesticide Action week taking place from 20 – 30 March 2016 will focus specifically on health. Many EDC-Free partners including the Generations Future as the organiser, are involved in this annual event. 

Other important issues such as biodiversity, natural gardening, organic food, agricultural techniques, soils will be highlighted, but the main focus of communications to the public will be the impacts of pesticides including endocrine disrupting pesticides on health and what to do in order to promote alternatives for better health and well-being.

The “health focus” will be a good opportunity to put pressure on decision makers so that they implement real policies to reduce the use of pesticides to protect people.

The call for participation to the 11th edition is available online so you can download it here. Tools and communications will be available soon, but for now you can find out more information on the website here

Post provided by Generations Futures 

WECF – Flame retardants in consumer products remain a hot topic for environmental

EDC-Free campaign partner Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF) welcomes a recent report by the French national risk assessment agency for health and environment (ANSES) on flame retardants used in upholstered furniture.

Furniture is one of the many products which impacts indoor air quality. None of the 22 substances used in upholstered furniture and selected for the ANSES study could be proven safe for health and the environment, with each of them at least suspected to be classified in one of the following categories: reprotoxic, neurotoxic, an EDC, carcinogenic, persistent in the environment. As a consequence, ANSES recommends to use alternative methods to flame retardants.

Several halogenated (brominated, chlorinated, fluorinated) compounds which were widely used until recently notably as flame retardants – are now identified by the Stockholm Convention as “Persistent Organic Pollutants”.

WECF welcomes that ANSES works on this issue, which is of concern for many people. The study reveals that indoor air quality standards do not cover all potential air contaminants, whereas this would be quite necessary to improve knowledge and prevent exposures from vulnerable populations – for example, children in nurseries or pregnant women.

WECF is calling for more collaboration between EU Member States dealing with chemicals in consumer products.

Post provided by WECF France 

Alborada Foundation – EDCs in Madrid – A message for politicians

On 13 October, EDC-Free campaign supporter Alborada Foundation, in cooperation with of CaixaForum Madrid, hosted an event on EDCs aimed at politicians.

For the first time in Spain, the best specialists in EDCs met and shared the results of their research. Discussions looked at how EDCs are able to produce imbalances in the hormone system, triggering or exacerbating diseases such as diabetes, infertility, autism, chemical sensitivity and hormone-related cancers.

All speakers stressed that it is essential that the government act immediately to reduce the incidence of diseases related to EDCs, since current measures are insufficient and consumer information, little or in-existent.

Many ideas and commitments came up by the political representatives and the organisations who attended the event, which took place before elections in Spain in December. After the elections, Foundation Alborada hopes to enhance the role of environmental health in the list of priorities of the Spanish government.

Before the end of the year Foundation Alborada is offering free webinars and a course on EDCs for health professionals in Spanish.

Videos of the lectures and more information about the campaign Don’t let them disrupt your hormones! available in the project’s blog here

Post provided by Alborada Foundation 

NGOs Co-Sign Letter to MEP regarding upcoming Medical Device Regulation Negotiations

HCWH Europe EDC Free Healthcare FB 1

18 international environmental and health organisations including several EDC-Free campaign partners and supporters came together on 11 November to co-sign a letter to MEP Glenis Willmott, seeking her support for an amendment to the EU Commission (EC) Regulation Proposal on Medical Devices in the upcoming trialogue negotiations between the European Parliament (EP), the Luxembourg and Dutch Presidencies of the European Council, and the EU Commission.

You can read the letter to MEP Glenis Willmott here.

HCWH Europe EDC-Free Healthcare Twitter 2

 

HCWH Europe EDC-Free Healthcare Twitter 1

Post and infographics provided by EDC-Free campaign partner Health Care Without Harm (HCWH)

Hair wax contains illegal chemical

A new test from EDC-Free campaign supporter The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals reveals that the hair wax “Kérastase K Short Mania” from L’Oréal contains a chemical (polyaminopropyl biguanide) that is prohibited in cosmetics. The substance is a suspected carcinogen and therefore banned for use in cosmetics in the EU. L’Oréal has decided to withdraw the product from the market.

Test af kemi i hårvoks

In the test The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals closely examined the ingredient lists of 48 brands of hair wax. The result shows that almost half – 23 – of the tested products score the lowest mark. That is due to the facts that they contain allergenic preservatives or substances which are suspected to be carcinogenic or endocrine disrupting.

Project manager in The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals, Stine Müller, recommends consumers to choose hair wax that has received a good mark in the test.

“Hair wax is not a product that you apply to your skin. However, it gets in close contact with the scalp and the hands, and it is a product, that many people use every single day for many hours. I will recommend parents to take a look at the teenagers’ hair wax and decide whether it should be switched to one without unwanted chemicals,” she says.

L’Oréal recalls the hair wax

At L’Oréal director of communication Sonja Christensen informs that “Kérastase K Short Mania” is no longer in production. She refers to an ongoing discussion in the EU about whether the substance is illegal or not.

“Regardless of the result we are convinced that polyaminopropyl biguanide can be used in the given concentration, and The Danish Environmental Protection Agency confirms that the product does not constitute a health risk. Because the product is no longer in production and because we do not want to create mistrust regarding our products, we have chosen to recall the few products that remain on the market,” she says.

IdHAIR also contains unwanted chemical substance

IdHAIR waxes are a very popular brand in Denmark. Unfortunately, hair waxes from IdHAIR are also among the products that fail the test. IdHAIR contains the substance chloroacetamide which is allergenic and suspected to affect the ability to reproduce. The Danish Environmental Protection Agency states, that the substance is not prohibited. But a possible ban is being discussed in the EU.

IdHAIR informs that the company is in a process of finding alternatives to the substance.

A total of 11 hair waxes receive the best possible mark in the test. If you want to avoid problematic chemicals, these are good choices.

The test in Danish: http://kemi.taenk.dk/bliv-klogere/test-kemi-i-haarvoks

Post provided by the Danish Consumer Council 

HEAL welcomes Endocrine Society second Scientific Statement on EDCs

EDC-Free campaign secretariat HEAL welcomes the release today of the Executive Summary of a crucial and authoritative scientific statement to be published in the October online issue of the Endocrine Reviews, a journal of the Endocrine Society.

In the Executive Summary, the Endocrine Society (world’s oldest, largest and most active organisation devoted to research on hormones and the clinical practice of endocrinology), says that there is no longer any doubt that exposure to EDCs, found in food and consumer goods, are contributing to some serious illnesses, including obesity, diabetes and cancer.

The Executive Summary of the Statement released today says: “… it is more necessary than ever to minimize further exposures, to identify new EDCs as they emerge, and to understand underlying mechanisms in order to develop methods to enable interventions in cases of EDC associated disease.” 

HEAL urges the EU Commission to listen to the endocrinologists on the science, and move the EU policy forward with the speed that this threat to our health deserves.

You can read HEAL’s reaction here

Post provided by HEAL

BCUK – Handbag guide to harmful chemicals found in everyday products

BCUK handbag guidWe’re all exposed to synthetic and potentially harmful chemicals on a daily basis especially from items such as cosmetics, personal care products and soft furnishings.

But it’s not always easy to know what to avoid, what to look out for and if there are alternative options available. That’s why  EDC-Free campaign partner Breast Cancer UK has re-launched theirhandbag guide for people to take out with them when they go shopping. This new mini guide aims to help consumers identify what to look out for and what to avoid.