Next week, on 7-8 December, Member States will have the opportunity discuss three crucial matters with the Commission in REACH’s Committee meeting. There will be a discussion on the restriction of lead in PVC and potential votes on the identification of the chemical substance Resorcinol as an endocrine disruptor along with a potential vote on the use permit of lead chromates in paints.
The discussions may determine whether the European Union are really looking towards a toxic-free environment. These substances have the potential to harm our children, health and the environment and several NGOs have banded together by writing a joint letter pushing Member States to meet their demands. The toxic substances currently on our market should have been phased out years ago and Member States need to urgently act.
What is at stake: If Member States don’t follow the NGOs petitions in their votes:
Why Member States should follow the NGO petitions:
Damaging Effects of Toxic Substances
Tatiana Santos, Policy Manager for Chemicals & Nanotechnology
“Lead is highly toxic and there is no safe level of exposure. Lead in PVC is such an old story that it is no longer used in the EU since 2015. Still, two years ago, the Commission attempted to allow the recycling of polluted PVC into new products. Fortunately, the European Parliament vetoed such proposal. We hope the Commission will take full responsibility this time and meet the Green Deal’s objectives to clean the circular economy and the protection of human health and the environment. And it has to do so asap, we are talking about thousands of tonnes of lead that have been placed on the European market in PVC products, every year counts.”
Natacha Cingotti, Health and Chemicals Programme Lead at HEAL
“The identification of Resorcinol as a substance of very high concern under REACH provisions is supported by robust scientific evidence and is an important credibility test for commitments of the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability. The substance is a known endocrine disruptor affecting the functioning of the thyroid system, which is essential for children’s development. The severity of the impacts associated to exposure for individuals’ health and quality of life over the long term should provide impetus for Member States to proceed as soon as possible”.
Notes from the Editor
NGO joint letter to the REACH Committee: https://eeb.org/library/joint-ngo-letter-to-the-reach-committee/