The Community Executive has presented its Strategy for the Sustainability of Chemical Substances against dangerous chemical products: the cosmetics industry will have to comply, for products destined to be transported both into and out of the European Community.
The European Commission (EC) has recently taken a fundamental step in prohibiting the use of some of the most dangerous chemicals from daily life in a move destined to improve the safety and sustainability of the environment and improve and safeguard the health of its citizens. In fact, “Zero Pollution” and “A Toxic-Free Environment” in the European Union (EU) are the ambitious goals that The Community Executive has presented in its Strategy for the Sustainability of Chemical Substances.
The most harmful chemicals that the new rules prohibit include endocrine disruptors and substances that affect the immune and respiratory systems, which can be found in consumer products such as cosmetics, detergents, toys, childcare articles, materials in contact with food and textiles.
“Chemicals are part and parcel of our daily life, and they play a crucial role in many of the innovations that help green our economy. But chemicals should not hurt our health or the environment. Today, many of them still do,” tweeted EC Vice-President, Frans Timmermans. “We use a huge variety of products every day. Whether it’s the clothes we wear, the food we eat, or the toys our children play with, they should be safe. One of the first actions we will take is to ensure that the most harmful chemicals no longer find their way into consumer products.”
The initiative of the Community Executive, which must be followed by decisive legislative proposals, sets out “concrete actions” to make chemical products more sustainable. It encourages the Member States to promote innovation in this field through the European fund of 750,000 million euros to recover the economy after the Coronavirus crisis. Furthermore, the so-called “chemical cocktail effect”, that results from the combination of different chemicals, has been addressed by the European Executive willing to ensure that consumers have clear access to information on the chemical content and safe use of products.
The other main concept that leads the ruling of European authorities on chemicals is “sustainability”, a requirement that will affect the life of any new product that is researched and developed.
But what is quite significant for the manufacturers, especially those whose turnover depends largely on export, is the fact that the application of EU rules will also apply to products destined for foreign markets, including the countries outside the EU. Safety and sustainability standards will be therefore promoted globally, with the aim that dangerous substances banned in the EU cannot be produced for export.