Groundbreaking EU toxic chemicals ban

Today, the EU Commission announced the Restrictions Roadmap – a historic plan to promptly ban thousands of toxic chemicals in Europe.

“If implemented, the action will be the largest ever regulatory removal of authorised chemicals anywhere and covers chemicals that environmental, consumer and health groups have fought against for decades”, states the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) in their press release. “The Restrictions Roadmap, is a political commitment to use existing laws to ban all flame retardants, chemicals that are frequently linked to cancer, and all bisphenols, widely used in plastics but which disrupt human hormones”, the EEB summarizes. “It will also ban all forms of PVC, the least recyclable plastic that contains large amounts of toxic additives, and restrict all PFAS ‘forever chemicals’, plus around 2,000 harmful chemicals found in baby diapers, pacifiers and childcare products”.

WECF joins the EEB in celebrating this successful step towards a toxic-free and healthy environment.

Johanna Hausmann – Senior Policy Advisor for WECF – reflects on the announcement; “We welcome the  Restrictions Roadmap under the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability presented by the EU Commission today as a decisive and historic step to quickly ban harmful chemicals”.

“With every harmful chemical that comes onto the market, whether already existing or newly produced, we endanger our environment and health anew every day” – Johanna Hausmann

“We sincerely hope that policy-makers will not bow to the great lobbying potential of a powerful industry, and will implement their policy announced in the Chemicals Strategy with foresight and consistency for real protection against harmful chemicals,” Johanna states. “The EU’s regulatory approach, often too slow and too little controlled, has allowed industry to put thousands of substances on the market, even when there was insufficient data. This has also led to an increase in environmentally related diseases, children being born pre-polluted, and the environment being contaminated e.g. with persistent substances for centuries.”

For the full press release, go to the EEB website.