EU criteria used to identify EDCs must be transparent and secure a high level of protection

The Endocrine Society urges EU Parliament to be transparent around EDC criteria

image of transparency

Washington, DC – Earlier this week, Member States of the European Union voted in favor of draft criteria to define endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs). The Endocrine Society is extremely concerned that the criteria will fail to identify EDCs that are currently causing human harm and will not secure a high level of health and environmental protection.

The world’s largest organization of endocrinologists is therefore urging the European Parliament to improve transparency surrounding the process for implementing the criteria and to engage endocrine scientists in further decision-making steps.

An EDC is a chemical or mixture of chemicals that can cause adverse health effects by interfering with hormones in the body. There are more than 85,000 manufactured chemicals, of which thousands may be EDCs. EDCs are found in everyday products and throughout the environment.

The criteria on EDCs cannot be called science-based as it contains arbitrary exemptions for chemicals specifically designed to disrupt target insect endocrine systems that have similarities in humans and wildlife. Earlier, the Endocrine Society, the European Society for Endocrinology, and the European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology released a statement strongly objecting to the addition of loopholes in the criteria as they create frameworks where potentially dangerous chemicals cannot be defined as EDCs by law.

The three societies urge Member States to work towards improved criteria for the identification of EDCs by incorporating the following recommendations:

  1. Removing the exemption for biocides and pesticides designed to act on endocrine systems;
  2. Adhering to a science-based definition of EDCs that include categories for known EDCs and chemicals for which more information is needed to make a determination; and
  3. Maintaining a hazard-based identification system without derogations based on risk.

The European Parliament will vote on the criteria in the coming months, and we encourage the Parliament to gather input from endocrine scientists and professional endocrine associations during their deliberations. Further details regarding the implementation of the criteria still need to be worked out, and we call for transparency on how the contributions from endocrine scientists will be given due consideration in the process by EFSA, ECHA, and the European Commission.

Image credit Sarah-Jane.

An Investigation
  1. The Manufacture of a Lie.
  2. A Denial of the State of the Science.
  3. The Interference of the United States.
  4. The Discreet but Major Gift to the Pesticides Lobby.
Endocrine Disruptors

2 thoughts on “EU criteria used to identify EDCs must be transparent and secure a high level of protection”

  1. I see the issue very similarly to the tobacco situation in the 50s. Tobacco industry had evidence that it was carcinogenic but kept the result to themselves and even bought doctors and “reputed” professors to confirm the lack of harmful effects derived from the tobacco consumption.
    Now industry has more power over science (a phenomenon starting to be called prostituted science). Is easier to silence dissident voices or at least discredit them with paid Internet trolls and mass media campaigns. We are seeing this on the mobile phone, food and chemical industries. Unfortunately industries will always have advantage over the people’s mind because they spend billions per year on marketing and mass psychology research having access to big data. I’d call it an asymmetric information war.

    1. I could not agree more with you Dan.
      People need now to run petitions, and reach massive huge numbers of signers, in order to get a small chance of being heard by deciding boards.

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