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HEAL Newsflash - September 2010

BPA: European food panel fails to protect EU citizens’ health

HEAL and partners were dismayed by the conclusion from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) that no stronger protection for public health is needed from the controversial synthetic chemical bisphenol A (BPA). With growing evidence that BPA may play a role in major chronic diseases, reducing levels of human exposure is a necessary and important step. Read more...

Biocides: Disappointment over the European Parliament’s vote

HEAL, along with other NGOs, has criticized the outcome of the European Parliament vote over the authorisation and marketing of household pesticides and insecticides, known as biocides. The result of the EP vote falls far behind other current EU chemicals law, such as REACH or the pesticide regulation - ultimately failing to protect consumers’ health and the environment. While MEPs underline that biocides allowed on the market should not have any harmful effects on human health, especially for vulnerable groups like children, they don’t follow this principle through in the overall resolution, for example in labelling. We hope that environmental ministers will address the EP’s shortcomings. Read more…

The next steps for the WHO European Environment and Health process

The sixtieth session of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Committee for Europe was held in Moscow, from 13 to 16 September 2010. As WHO’s annual meeting to discuss strategy, the 2010 meeting also saw the endorsement of the new environment and health commitments agreed on at the Parma Ministerial Conference earlier this year. HEAL and partners, have played a key role in the WHO Environment and Health process from the beginning and were present in Moscow to reiterate the urgency for action in this process, particularly in improving children’s health and helping to prevent diseases such as cancer, asthma and obesity. Read more….

New Report: 30% emissions reduction target could save public health billions

EU Member State governments could radically improve public health and save on health care budgets if European Union climate policy were substantially strengthened. These ground-breaking findings were published by HEAL and our member organisation, Health Care Without Harm Europe in our new report, Acting now for better health: A 30% target for EU climate policy. Read more…

Sick of Pesticides: Campaigns take shape across Europe

HEAL’s Sick of Pesticides campaign has expanded to Hungary, Belgium and the Netherlands with capacity building workshops planned for the autumn and new information websites. We welcome our three new country partners who will be coordinating the national campaigns to raise awareness of the links between pesticides, cancer, cancer and other diseases, and involve new health groups. Together, we aim to put pressure on governments to encourage them to set up an ambitious National Action Plans for Pesticide Reduction by 2011 and to help citizens and public bodies rapidly reduce their dependence on pesticides. Find out more about the campaigns by clicking on the relevant country sections Or find us on Facebook.


Apart from impressive coverage following the launch of our climate change report, BPA has maintained its place on the media agenda with articles in European Voice and on Men’s Health Forum blog in July and then a spate of articles following publication of US research linking BPA to male infertility. Lisette Van Vliet was quoted in the German daily, Die Tageszeitung on "the right to know" under REACH legislation and Chemical Watch covered HEAL’s call for a second environment and health action plan and announced our new chemicals mixtures brochure. See more HEAL media coverage from the past few months…


We have an exciting few months ahead of us, below is just a snap shot.

4th – 5th October. HEAL Annual General Assembly. This year, HEAL and over 30 of our members, will meet in Brussels to discuss strategy, share ideas and elect a new Executive Committee.

5th October. HEAL Policy Event “EU Action on Environment and Health: Perspectives for a 2nd Environment and Health Action Plan.

18th October. Indoor Air Quality in Different Living Settings; results of investigations and consequences in terms of decision making. HEAL is an official supporter of this conference as a part of the Belgian Presidency of the EU.

30th November. Premier European Film Screening: Living Downstream – and supporting seminar with world-renowned ecologist Sandra Steingraber. The film follows her personal journey and scientific exploration, and is a powerful reminder of the intimate connection between the health of our bodies and the health of our air, land and water. The accompanying seminar with Sandra will provide an opportunity to explore further the links between cancer and the environment. We’ll update you with details in the October’s News Flash, in the mean time you can read more about Sandra here .

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This service is provided by the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) to keep you up-to-date with the latest news from the HEAL secretariat.

HEAL raises awareness of how environmental protection improves people’s health, and works to strengthen European policies. We do this by creating better representation of expertise and evidence from the health community in decision making processes. HEAL is a diverse network of over 60 citizens’, patients’, health professionals’, women’s and environmental groups. Our members include international and Europe-wide organisations, as well as national and local groups.

Last updated on 7 June 2011

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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Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL)
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B1000 Brussels, Belgium
Phone: +32 2 234 3640
Fax: +32 2 234 3649
Press: Elke Zander

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