Circular Economy

Environmental health

The negative effects of human activity – including pollution, climate change, natural resource depletion and biodiversity loss – not only cause environmental degradation, but also have negative effects on human health. It is vital to safeguard the EU citizens from environment-related pressures and risks to health and well-being. Chemicals in products are on the EU policy agenda, particularly as the EU’s Circular Economy strategy seeks to ensure easier reintroduction of secondary raw materials into the economy without spreading problematic substances more widely amongst the public and the environment. ECOS has been calling for more stringent application of the existing chemicals legislation, and continuing to push for long-awaited nanomaterial-specific legislation. Our goal is to eliminate or minimise the use of problematic substances in (consumer) products with a view to protect human health and the environment. We wish to promote the development of ambitious requirements on problematic substances in product standards, and including to support the safe and sustainable use of nanomaterials.

What we are working on

  • Monitor relevant developments to prevent the introduction of external ignition requirements in European and international standards related to the safety of relevant products that would provide an incentive for the use of flame retardants.
  • Assist standardisers to address toxic chemicals in products and contribute to phasing out harmful chemical substances such as flame retardants and endocrine disruptors.
  • Ensure the development of clear, harmonised definitions for nanomaterials and nanotechnologies at global level.
  • Contribute to the H2020 projects RiskGONE and NANORIGO. The projects focus on risk governance of nanomaterials with an outlook to create a risk governance framework for nanomaterials and an independent Risk Governance Council.

Related news

  • NGOs call on decision-makers to support the French ban on titanium dioxide – ECOS co-signs the press release

    A crucial European meeting to discuss the French ban of E171 – the food additive version of titanium dioxide – is due to take place on Monday 16th September. Civil society groups across Europe raise questions about a new industry study released ahead of this meeting and warn against diverting decision-makers’ attention from the already existing evidence of the potential health threats posed by E171.

  • ECOS is looking for experts!

    ECOS experts provide us with technical and scientific input and represent us in technical standardisation and policy discussions. We are currently recruiting experts in the fields of nanotechnologies, fertilisers and steel.

  • Tackling microplastic pollution at its source: the example of pellets

    With up to 167 000 tonnes estimated to leak into the environment in Europe every year, plastic pellets are the second largest source of primary microplastic pollution (after tyre abrasion and before microfibers from textile).

Contact person

Doreen Fedrigo
Head of Circular Economy Policy+32 2 894 46 56 doreen.fedrigo@ecostandard.org
Michael Neaves
Programme Manager+32 2 893 08 59 michael.neaves@ecostandard.org

ECOS is co-funded by the European Commission and EFTA

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