PAN EuropeNews


Press Release

16th December 2013

It is a fact now: European Commission missed the deadline for presenting the criteria for endocrine disrupting pesticides

According to pesticide Regulation 1107/2009 European Commission should present “a draft of the measures concerning specific scientific criteria for the determination of endocrine disrupting properties” by December 14, 2013. And a day before that date the same for biocides. But now it is a fact: Commission failed to do so. Commission neither presented „scientific criteria” nor „the measures for the determination of endocrine disrupting properties” to the Standing Committee.

PAN Europe feels that it is a sad day for citizens in Europe because the promised protection against the negative health effects of endocrine disrupting pesticides will be moved ahead. Since there is no new deadline, the delay could be substantial, possibly years. European Parliament, who has agreed with Member States on the deadline of 14 December 2013, should hold Commission accountable for the delay, according to PAN.

The effects of the delay will be serious. Many pesticides with endocrine disrupting properties such as Glyphosate and 2,4-D will get a revised approval next year while their endocrine effects will not be assessed now the criteria and measures are missing. And the widespread exposure of the public to endocrines in food will likely be responsible for more negative (child) health effects in future [1]. A serving of salat on average even contains a comparable amount of total endocrine pesticide residues to the pregnancy pill [2].

The reason of inaction is the intervention of Commission Secretary General in July of this year. She stopped the process of criteria-setting and demanded an impact assessment, only for pesticides and biocides. Since the ’roadmap’ for the impact assessment is not published yet, progress is halted for a half year already.

PAN Europe thinks it is totally unacceptable what is happening. DG Environment has been working on the criteria for two year and suddenly –without any justification- the process of proposing scientific criteria was halted. Scientific criteria are now made subject to an economic impact assessment which does not make sense. And this could mean that in stead of the best scientific criteria to protect EU citizens, those criteria are chosen that have the lowest costs for industry and agriculture. This is not in line with the pesticide Regulation that aims to protect people and the environment.

For the endocrine disrupting chemicals in products, in toys, plastics, cosmetics, etc. the situation is even more unsure. The promised European „horizontal’ criteria counting for all substances will not be published and the future protection by Europe against the harms of these substances is unsure. 

— ENDS —

Further information

1. Endocrine disruptors and child health, WHO, 2012.

For further information please contact:

Hans Muilerman, Tel: +316 55807255

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