Chemicals cheerleader: how DG Grow puts industry above public interest regulation

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A roadmap for how the EU is to regulate toxic chemicals has been leaked, and the document reveals in stark detail the role DG Grow is playing in mirroring chemical industry lobbying points. DG Grow’s sidelining of the public interest is a pattern, from its input on questions of affordable medicines to the Dieselgate scandal. It’s time for root and branch reform in the European Commission to stop the corporate capture of DG Grow.

Today’s leaked draft Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability shows DG Grow (the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship, and SMEs) working to protect the interests of the chemical industry at the expense of health and environmental standards. It is time to end the corporate capture of DG Grow.

The Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS) is part of the European Commission’s Green Deal. Its stated aim is to “help to protect citizens and the environment better against hazardous chemicals and encourage innovation for the development of safe and sustainable alternatives” and it will review how the EU regulates chemicals.

The leaked CSS reveals an original DG Environment draft with many positive aspects. For example it proposes to speed up action to ban the most toxic chemicals, including endocrine disruptors, and to introduce a “Toxic-Free Hierarchy” to guide decision-making so as to avoid, minimise, and control damaging chemicals. DG Environment has hailed the forthcoming strategy as a “game changer” and the most significant development on EU chemicals policy since the REACH regulation 15 years ago.



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