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EU Parliament rejects use of dangerous plastic softeners -Childers

Press Release

Thursday 26 Nov 2015

Nessa Childers, MEP for Dublin, welcomed today’s objection in the EU Parliament to an EU Commission decision to keep plastic softening phthalates in the production of recycled plastics.

“This week MEPs voted very clearly that the Commission must not allow the recycling of plastics that contain the toxic phthalate (DEHP)

The decision relates to the Commission’s decision to authorise the use of bis (2-ethylhexhyl) phthalate (DEHP) under certain conditions.

Ms. Childers, a member of the Environment and Public Health Committee said:

“This substance is classified under EU law as toxic to reproduction, and Member State representatives in the EU Chemicals Agency are unanimous about is endocrine disrupting properties.

“Such hazardous chemicals pose threats to human health and the environment. It makes no sense to allow them to remain present in recycled PVC materials.

“This is a matter of particular concern to the health of workers who would be manipulating these materials.

“I congratulate my fellow colleagues who decided to oppose the view that the economic benefits outweigh the risks to human health.

“We cannot determine what a safe level for endocrine disruptors is, so we must not be making judgements about supposed trade-offs, when the science points to links between pregnant women exposure to this type of phthalate and birth defects in baby boys.

“I hope the Council of EU Member State governments will agree with Parliament when they vote on this matter, so that we can force the hand of the Commission and sort these substances out of the recycling bin.”



The Commission is competent to decide over some specific and technical matters when implementing EU law, but Parliament and the EU Member States’ Council are also issuing their own assessment.