On 6 February 2024, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced the withdrawal of the European Commission's proposal for the EU pesticides reduction regulation (SUR). EDC-Free Europe members are deeply concerned with the decision and stress that it undermines efforts to ensure an effective protection of EU citizens and ecosystems from hazardous pesticides.   

The European Commission’s proposal for an EU pesticides reduction regulation (SUR) was initially put forward in June 2022, with the aim to gradually reduce the use and risk of chemical pesticides in the EU by 50% by 2030. The proposal included measures to protect sensitive areas, such as public areas, nature reserves and water resources. Following months of negotiations, the European Parliament failed to agree on the draft text leading to a rejection of the text in November 2023. 

European agriculture is pesticide-intensive, using a vast number of substances that a growing body of independent science says can negatively impact health, wildlife and the environment. Numerous pesticides found as residues in the food we eat, the water we drink and the air we breathe are known or suspected to be harmful endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).   

The withdrawal of the SUR proposal will allow continued harmful contamination of the environment, with those most vulnerable (such as farmers, pregnant women and children) being most at risk. The decision ignores the voices of over 1.1 million EU citizens who call for an 80% gradual reduction of the use of synthetic pesticides by 2030, and a total phase out by 2035.   

Visit the links below for reactions from EDC-Free Europe coalition members: