European environment ministers are calling on the European Commission to provide without delay an action plan to ensure a high level of protection of human health and the environment by minimising exposure to endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs), a move that has been welcomed by the EDC-Free Europe coalition.
European environment ministers have adopted unanimously today Council conclusions, titled "Towards a Sustainable Chemicals Policy Strategy of the Union". Ahead of today’s EU Council meeting, members of the EDC-Free Europe campaign urged ministers to stand strong for better protection of citizens against EDCs.
Many key demands from our campaign’s priorities for a European strategy on EDCs have been endorsed by the ministers, in particular:
- To put health and precaution as the cornerstone of EU chemicals legislation, and to give particular relevance to vulnerable groups such as children.
- The need to improve the coherence and effectiveness of EU regulation on chemicals to achieve a high level of protection of health and the environment, especially with respect of the precautionary principle.
- The development and implementation of an early warning system at EU level for identifying new, emerging chemicals risks and taking appropriate actions.
- The urgent need for special attention to combined effects and exposure of humans and the environment from all relevant sources.
- The need to speed up testing, screening and identification of endocrine disruptors.
- The promotion of substitution by safer alternatives.
- The call for a horizontal approach for the hazard-based identification of EDCs.
These Council conclusions and the European Parliament Resolution adopted earlier in April set out clear priorities for speedy action on chemicals for the new European Commission coming into office. The EDC-Free Europe coalition is mobilising to ensure action on endocrine disrupting chemicals will be a high priority for this new political term.