European Parliament rejects unworkable and unlawful chemical regulation for endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).
Today the European Parliament rejected the unworkable and controversial European Commission proposal of identification criteria for endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs). The Alliance for Cancer Prevention is very heartened that MEPs [i] have rejected this proposal as it would have failed in its aim to protect human health or our environment. As EDCs have long been linked with cancer, the proposal would not have contributed to cancer prevention which would have been a severe disappointment given their potential for recognition of EDCs as risk factors for cancer. EDCs can be found in wide range of products which people are exposed to each and every day, such as plastics, cosmetics, toys, building materials and cleaning products, through the work they do or the lives they lead.
After years of delay and quibbling by the European Commission on how far it would go to protect EU citizens from Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDCs) , the end results suggests not far enough! Up until now EDCs, which are linked to cancer, reproductive and developmental disorders, infertility and allergies, have had no effective regulation despite the fact that they can be found in a variety of products we live and work with on a daily basis. Scientists and independent scientific institutes have submitted evidence and written to the EC to express their concern about the ‘unfit for purpose’ EDC criteria. But despite scientific concerns and a petition signed by almost half a million people the Commission has now produced and agreed flawed criteria to assess EDCs which will fail to prevent unnecessary exposure for citizens and workers.
A comprehensive study of chemical exposures at GE’s Peterborough plant shows workers routinely handled more than 3,000 highly toxic substances in decades past. GE has said protective measures were appropriate for the time and that health and safety of workers has always been ‘No. 1 priority.’
“For many years, workers and their family members were forced to provide proof as to their working conditions, only to be told this is anecdotal,” said Sue James, whose father Gord worked at the plant for 30 years and died of lung and spinal cancer, diseases his family believes were caused by his exposure to workplace chemicals.