Bijdrage mili­eu­com­missie over de chemi­caliën strategie tijdens gedach­te­wis­seling met Virgi­nijus Sinke­vičius, Euro­com­mis­saris voor milieu, oceanen en visserij

15 oktober 2020

Anja Hazekamp (PvdD): Dear Commissioner. We have seen a relentless fight between stakeholders and different divisions of the Commission. I am relieved to see that at least in some aspects science and public interests have prevailed over private profits.

The strategy lists many important elements which we welcome, such as phasing out of the most hazardous chemicals, including PFAS and endocrine disruptors from consumer products. And, very close to my heart, ensuring that hazardous chemicals banned in the EU are not being produced for export. Well done commissioner, thank you.

But as the Commissioner knows: the devil is in the details, and the strategy is still quite vague. I hope to get more clarity today and therefore I have several questions to you.

First of all, the commission commits to move away from animal testing but fails to outline HOW it will do that. References to increased funding, dedicated staff at ECHA or increased efforts to step up and phase out animal testing are notably absent. Will the Commission increase funding for this important issue? Will it commit to accelerate the validation and introduction of alternative testing methods, and remove the barriers for their acceptance? We need more commitment on this.

On endocrine disruptors and specifically PFAS, we read that they will be banned in consumer products, but only ‘unless their use is essential to society’ - which leaves a giant loophole in this ambition and breaks the promise of the Commissioner that endocrine disruptors will be treated as CRM-substances. How will this play out in practice? And why do you already speak about derogations for the limits on hazardous chemicals in recycled material? This way we will never get to a clean circular economy.

And finally, who will pay for the announced transition? We only read about subsidies for the polluters, instead of fees…

I look forward to your answers and to the announced actions and I will be following their execution and implementation very closely.

Thank you.

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