Our submission for the new European chemicals strategy for sustainability

As an international ecofeminist network of 150 women and civil organizations NGOs committed to build a healthy environment and active at EU level for moving towards a toxic-free future, Women Engage for a Common Future (WECF) welcomes the publication by the European Commission of a Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability. Along with 423 other organisations, we responded to the European Commission’s call for feedback on the roadmap for the upcoming Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability.

Such a strategy was long awaited, and increasingly urgently needed, both in view of the too many years of delay of the adoption of EU EDCs criteria, and while the adaptation of EU legislative, implementation and control instruments has become urgent to ensure that current chemicals rules applicable at EU level, that are adequate in protecting the health of European populations and ecosystems from hazards generated by the increasing production and use of chemicals-of-concern.

Our 10 key demands for Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability:

1) Deliver by 2030 ambitious reduction targets of production and use/consumption of chemicals hazardous for health and the environment

2) Make eco-design and healthy products a priority in substitution of chemicals of concern

3) Grouping chemicals with the same chemical structure for evaluation

4) Urgently and adequately regulate Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) to protect the health of present and future generations

5) A healthy and non-toxic food, without traces of pesticides of concern, must be a priority

6) Protect in priority vulnerable groups like pregnant women, children, and others, and better address women’s health by banning chemicals of concern for human health including PFAS

7) New kinds of substances that are hazardous to health and/or the environment must be regulated: we cannot remain stuck in the last century

8) Apply the polluter-pays principle to generate resources for substitution/innovation and save immense health and environmental decontamination costs

9) Address the specificities of nanomaterials to prevent uncontrollable and irreversible damages to health and the environment

10) Reducing the sheer volumes of hazardous chemicals, waste and plastic production, and stop exporting (toxic) waste

The full submission can be found here online or as a download