• October 13, 2020
  • EEB

The EU Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability: Learning from the past, looking towards the future: reflections for a EU toxic-free environment | Online event: 19 October

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Speakers include: Frans Timmermans (Executive Vice President of the European Commission), Aileen Mioko Smith ( Book Co-author with W. Eugene Smith, Minamata), Andrew Levitas (Movie Writer- Director- Producer, Minamata), Roald Lappere (Director General for the Environment and International Affairs, Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management) Monique Goyens (Director-General BEUC), Diana Visser (Sustainability Director, Corbion) and Jeremy Wates (Secretary General, European Environmental Bureau).


On the 14th October 2020, as a first step towards the EU’s Zero Pollution Ambition, the European Commission is expected to present the long-awaited Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability that aims to ensure a toxic free environment for the EU. The strategy is the EU’s flagship initiative under the Green Deal to take the next steps to better protect citizens and the environment against hazardous chemicals and encourage innovation for the development of safe and sustainable alternatives.

Currently, the EU has the most advanced and comprehensive chemicals policy framework in the world. At the same time, major challenges remain.

Large scale incidences of pollution such as the mercury disaster portrayed in the soon to be released movie ‘Minamata’ are still a reality around the globe today. Europe reacted fast to the Minamata disaster and became a global front runner on mercury control. However, mercury remains a serious threat to human health and the environment, as do newer substances such as PFAS. What lessons have we learned from the past and how do we reflect these in the EU chemicals policy framework we need for the future?

Join us on the 19th of October for a high-level policy dialogue on the Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability. In this interactive online discussion, bringing together key policy makers and stakeholders, we will reflect on lessons learned from the past and how the new Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability could effectively address the challenges we face moving forward.

The first 100 registered participants for this event will be given a unique sneak preview of the soon to be released movie ‘Minamata’ by director Andrew Levitas. Minamata, portrays war photographer W. Eugene Smith (Johnny Depp) and his wife Aileen Mioko Smith (Minami) documenting the devastating effect of mercury poisoning in Minamata, a coastal community in Japan. The film’s premiere was at the Berlinale earlier this year and will be released in cinemas across the EU next year.



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