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Putting health at the centre of the EU Environment Action Programme

By setting “health & environment” as one of the four priorities of the current 6th Environmental Action Programme, this theme has served as a driver for important initiatives in EU chemicals, pesticides and air quality policy. While environmental health protection has increased through the initiation of many new policies or revisions, the challenges we face from existing and emerging environmental contamination remain huge and require urgent action. Environmental pollution – including air, noise, chemical, and water - is an important factor in the rise of chronic diseases, and strongly related to social inequalities.

This is a message that has also been highlighted by the European Environment Agency’s State of the Environment Report 2010.

HEAL urges EU environment ministers to raise their concerns on the links of environment and health at their meeting and show their commitment for a renewed environment and health agenda in the 7 EAP.

Areas of specific concern that should be addressed include measures to address endocrine disruptors EDCs, chemical mixtures and nanomaterials, as well as a better protection from substances of very high concern SVHC.

Meanwhile, citizens, organisations and public authorities can submit their views on the 7 EAP to a public consultation launched by the European Commission. The consultation is open until 1 June.

Last updated on 10 April 2012

About HEAL

The Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) is a leading European not-for-profit organisation addressing how the environment affects health in the European Union (EU). We demonstrate how policy changes can help protect health and enhance people’s quality of life. Read more »


HEAL has over 70 member organisations, representing health professionals, not-for-profit health insurers, doctors, nurses, cancer and asthma groups, citizens, women’s groups, youth groups, environmental NGOs, scientists and public health institutes. Members include international and Europe-wide organisations, as well as national and local groups. Read more »

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