Category Archives: News

Study finds toxic additives in chewing gum for kids

After analysing 54 brands of chewing gum marketed to children, EDC-Free campaign supporter Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals found that 41 of them (76%) contained the potential hormone disrupting chemicals E320 and E321. Not only that, but in the three years that this analysis has been carried out, this year obtained the worst results. The two above substances are not the only ingredients that cause concern among experts, but also the gum appears to be becoming less healthy.

The two toxic substances in which this study focuses are E320 and E321, two antioxidants artificial food, also known as BHA and BHT. These compounds, from the oil industry, are present in other food products as well.

What can we do?

The first step is to avoid products with E320 and E321 among its ingredients. But there is an important second step – put pressure on the European authorities to withdraw food substances that have been shown to be toxic to our health.

Post provided by the Danish Consumer Council

 

Open letter to Commissioner Vella calling to ban the recycling of materials containing toxic flame retardants

Public interest groups are calling on the EU Commission to ban the recycling of materials containing toxic flame retardants.  In an open letter, the Centre for International Environmental Law, the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), Women in Europe for Common Future (WECF) (EDC-Free campaign partners) and IPEN, supported by public interest groups worldwide, highlighted the need to stop DecaBDE reappearing in recycled products.

DecaBDE is a toxic flame retardant mainly used in plastics for electronic and electrical equipment and in textiles. The substance is bioaccumulative, meaning it accumulates in living organisms and persistent, thereby staying in the environment for years. It also has potential adverse effects on human and animal hormone, reproductive, and nervous systems.

The issue will be addressed by both the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) in September and the Stockholm Convention POPs Review committee in October.

The letter is available here

EDC-Free campaign partners who signed the letter:
Breast Cancer UK, BUND, CIEL, CHEM Trust, CPES, Ecologistas en Acción, EEB, Fundación Vivo Sano, 
Greenpeace, HEAL, HCWH, WECF 

EDC-Free campaign supporters who signed the letter: Commonweal, Eco-Accord, Fundación Alborada, IDEA – Irish Doctors Environmental Association, Quercus – National Association for Nature Conservation , TEDX – The Endocrine Disruption Exchange, and Wemos.

Post provided by the EDC-Free Secretariat 

One in Four Body Lotions Fail Chemical Test

Body lotions can contain allergenic preservatives and substances which are suspected to be EDCs, according to the Danish Consumer Council (an EDC-Free Europe campaign supporter). The organisation recently checked 54 different body lotions on the Danish market, including international brands, and found that 13 body lotions (24%) contain one or more unwanted substances.

The substances in question are allergenic preservatives and substances, for example parabens. Consumers should therefore take extra care when looking at the list of ingredients before they buy and apply body lotion to their skin.

In the test, 16 body lotions received the best possible marking. 24 only received an average rating due to their content of perfume, perfumed substances or plant extracts which all are known allergens.

“Perfumed lotion is the second most frequent cause of perfume allergy. Consequently, the consumers should be particularly aware of these. We recommend that they choose an unscented and eco-labeled body lotion to avoid the unwanted chemicals,” says Christel Søgaard Kirkeby of Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals.

The content of chemicals is particularly critical in body lotions because body lotions a product that stays on the skin for many hours. The longer a product stays on the skin, the more frequently you use it, and the larger the area of the body you use it on, the more likely you are to be exposed to unwanted and harmful chemicals.

The test results (in Danish) can be found here kemi.taenk.dk/bodylotion

Post provided by the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals

 

Over 2,700 parents sign petition for EDC-Free children’s products

An open and constructive talk between representatives of EDC-Free Europe campaign partner Women in Europe for a Common Future Netherlands (WECF), the Dutch Green Parent platform BabyBeGood, and the Director-General for public health Angelique Berg, reiterated that the Netherlands is taking the health risks of EDCs very seriously. The meeting took place at the Ministry of Health. 

WECF petition signed

After the meeting, WECF and BabyBeGood handed over a petition to the Director General in which parents voiced their concerns about the effects EDCs can have on the development and well-being of their children. The petition was signed by thousands of parents, both online, and offline, earlier this year at the sustainable baby plaza at the nine months fair.

The article is available in Dutch here

Post provided by WECF Netherlands

New ChemSec report on EDCs and the SIN List

chemsec new report

EDC-Free Europe campaign partner ChemSec has launched a publication focusing on all the EDCs on the SIN List, regardless of when they were added.

The SIN List, short for ‘Substitute It Now!’ consists of chemicals that have been identified by ChemSec as being Substances of Very High Concern (SVHCs), based on the criteria for them defined within REACH. The SIN List aims to speed up the REACH process as well as to offer a glimpse into the possible future of European chemicals regulation. It is currently the most well-founded list available of REACH relevant EDCs.

This new publication informs you with useful and important information about which chemicals to take action on! ChemSec calls on decision-makers to ensure that these chemicals are regulated, sooner rather than later, and asks companies to investigate whether any of these chemicals are used in their processes and products and if so, search for safer alternatives to replace them.

The listing of EDCs on the SIN List is especially important, since it, as opposed to other available lists, identifies EDCs based on more than a potential concern, but on solid scientific data. A more specific description of how the EDCs were selected for the SIN List can be found after the list of substances in this publication.

The report is available here (EN)

Post provided by ChemSec

Alborada Foundation raises awareness of EDCs with new international project

EDC-Free campaign support Alborada Foundation has launched a new international project in Spain entitled ¡Que no te alteren las hormonas! (Don’t let EDCs disrupt your hormones!).

alborada logo

The objective of this new project (in Spanish) is to raise awareness about EDCs and chemicals that may affect our hormonal system and have irreversible impacts on our health and the health of future generations.

As we are exposed on a daily basis to these chemicals which could be avoided and replaced, ¡Que no te alteren las hormonas! aims to inform the public about these substances, where they are found, how we can act and how we can reduce our daily exposure. You can find information on EDCs, with all the latest news and FAQs. Resources are available in Spanish.

Alborada Foundation works at the international level to inform citizens and policy makers on EDCs as it is vital to reduce exposure to these chemicals and use alternatives to protect our health and the environment. There are increasingly more diseases and health conditions such as cancer, fertility problems, increase in allergies and other diseases that are not only of genetic origin. There are several factors involved with growing evidence that our environment plays a fundamental role in the development of many of these diseases.

There has been a significant growth in chemical production in the past decades which has increasingly affects our health and the environment in which we live. Scientists around the world are ringing the alarm bell on the impacts of EDCs. As we are exposed to EDCs every day for example in products such as shower gel, lipstick, perfume, cleaning products, toys, plastics, carpets, etc, it is important to reduce the exposure to these chemicals and everyone can play a part in doing so.

Follow Alborada Foundation onFacebook  and Twitter @FundAlborada

Post provided by Alborada Foundation. 

¡Que no te alteren las hormonas! aims to offer a forum of exchange in Spanish for organisations, researchers and professionals from different fields to share and present their studies, work and activities in order to reduce the exposure to EDCs.

Setting criteria to identify EDCs: CHEM Trust’s view on proposed option ’4b’ by the German Risk Assessment Institute (BfR)

EDC-Free Europe campaign partner CHEM Trust has recently analysed a proposal from the German Risk Assessment Institute (BfR) for an additional option (’4b’) to identify EDCs as part of the EU’s currently investigation into the potential impacts of different ways of setting criteria to identify these chemicals. The EU has proposed four options, but at a EU conference in June, BfR presented their additional option.

In a recent briefing, CHEM Trust finds that this additional option ’4b’ is not a good method to set criteria, from both a scientific and policy point of view. Although this proposal may at first sight look like a reasonable way of identifying those EDCs of regulatory concern, it actually has several fundamental flaws in its approach to the science and policy around these chemicals.

In CHEM Trust’s view the main impact of “option 4b” will result in fewer EDCs being affected by regulation. This will therefore not provide adequate protection for human health and the environment.

For full details see CHEM Trust’s briefing including a one page executive summary.

Post provided by CHEM Trust

9th National Conference on EDCs show high exposure in Spain

On 25 June, EDC-Free campaign partner Ecologistas en Accion attended the 9th National Conference on EDCs in Cargagena, Spain, within the framework of the 13th Spanish Congress of Environmental Health. Scientists from the most important toxicological centres in Spain shared their results and discussed the measures of prevention for the near future.

This year, the conference focused on high exposure levels of Lindane, PCBs, Phalates and BPA in Spain. All of these EDCs may interfere with the functioning of our hormones, causing serious impacts on our health.

Nicolas Olea, Professor in Medicine and Research Coordinator of the Clinic Hospital of Granada, highlighted that three regions in the Iberian Peninsula suffer high exposure levels of Lindane (used years ago as a pesticide) that are not being analysed by the authorities. The exposure is due to unsecure dispersion of high amounts of this chemical, which ends up in food and water. This evidence is even more serious after the annoucement by the WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer that this pesticide is possibly carcinogenic for humans. He also highlighted that exposure to Lindane during the first month of pregnancy may cause cancer later in life.

Exposure to other EDCs in Spain such as PCBs are still present in electrical devices, paintings and resins, to which we are exposed through our diet and the prenatal period – which can affect the neurological development of children for example.

Argelia Castaño Professor, Director of European Project DEMOCOPHES, presented results on Phalates, where she mentioned that concentration on Dietil-Fthalate in Spanish children is much higher than in the rest of Europe. Professor Castaños presented an hypothesis of these values and the use of this chemical as the base of the fragrance in hygienic products (although it doesn’t appear as an ingredient).

Results obtained from BPA studies, which can appear in products such as policarbonated plastics, resins, dental filling or toys show that Spanish children have higher blood concentration of these chemicals than other children in Europe.

The conference concluded that constant exposure to EDCs means they are often found in our bodies. Even though exposure may be low, the consequences on our health can be due to their combined effect. Scientific evidence show that EDCs can affect our health, so the effort now is to address prevention and to keep demanding the rmoving of such chemicals from our environment and daily lives.

BPA_cabello

BPA_CohorteINMA_Granada

Ftalatos_democophes_España

Post provided by Ecologistas en Accion