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    The WHO’s EHC for RF and the EC on endocrine-disrupting chemicals: will industry win the day?

    Dariusz Leszczynski reports in his blog Between a Rock and A Hard Place the current status of the WHO’s next Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) for telecommunications frequencies (RF/MW). This criteria, once written and ratified, will form the basis for RF/MW regulations for years to come – so for the Telco industry a lot is riding on the outcome. I recommend a read of Leszczynski’s WHO analysis then consider the scandal unfolding with the European Commission’s criteria for identifying and regulating endocrine-disrupting chemicals – a huge concern for the chemical industry.

    Will industry influence win the day for both?

    Don

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    From Dariusz Leszczynski:

    Excerpt:

    WHO Environmental Health Criteria: A brief update
    Posted on June 12, 2016

    At the BioEM2016, I had a brief discussion with Eric van Rongen, about the status of the Environmental Health Criteria (EHC). This is what I learned:

    Task Group to evaluate science: recruitment is ongoing. The group will consist of some 25 – 30 experts. Process is slow because broader expertise is required as compared with IARC 2011, where only cancer was evaluated. The EHC will evaluate all possible health risks. The process is also slow because declarations of interest, submitted by the invited experts, need to be examined and approved by the legal office at the WHO. The first meeting of the EHC was planned for September 2016, but there might be a delay. If it happens, the whole process might be delayed and the EHC document might be published only in early 2017.

    The draft document for the EHC, a review of the science, that will be the basis for the deliberations of the Task Group, is still being updated. The updating is in response to comments obtained from the public and in order to include the newest published studies (studies published after the draft was written). The draft review of science will be, thus, up to date.
    As per current information, the NTP study will not be included in the EHC draft and, automatically (?), it will not be formally considered as a scientific evidence by the EHC Task Group. The group of scientists updating the EHC draft does not consider the NTP’s Draft Report as peer-reviewed publication. Peer-reviews included in the NTP Draft Report are not satisfactory for the EHC.

    If it really happens, I think it is not correct approach, from the EHC, to exclude NTP study. SNIP

    Read the full article here

    Also see Leszczynski earlier posting from November 2014: Consultation on WHO’s EHC on RF is a sham – decision of “no health effects” was made already
    Excerpt:
    The WHO EMF Project is conducting review of research on RF and will, in due time (2016 or later?) publish an Environmental Health Criteria (EHC) monograph. The first draft of this document was uploaded, in the end of September 2014, on the WHO website and anyone can send comments to be considered by the WHO. The commenting deadline has been recently extended to mid-December 2014.

    In one of my blogs, I severely complained about the EHC draft and I expressed an opinion that the consultation should be postponed until the full version of the draft will be available. The WHO, in persons of Emilie van Deventer and Eric van Rongen, considered my complaint as baseless.

    I still, and strongly, disagree.SNIP

    Read the full article here

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    From Environmental Health News:

    Endocrine disruptors: The secret history of a scandal

    Next week, sources say, the European Commission will take up regulations on endocrine-disrupting chemicals. Too bad the text driving the decision remains cloaked in covertness worthy of the most sensitive state secrets. Part 1 of 3.
    June 8, 2016

    By Stéphane Horel

    Editors Note: This article was originally published by Le Monde on May 20. This version is translated by the Health and Environment Alliance and is republished with permission. We are also republishing other parts of the investigation: Le Monde’s interview with French Environment Minister Ségoléne Royal (Part 2) and doubt sown by Brussels’ industry-linked scientific community (Part 3).

    Graphic by AUREL.

    This is one of the best kept secrets in Europe. It is locked up in the maze of corridors in the European Commission, in a guarded room that only about 40 accredited officials have the right to enter. And then only with paper and pen. Smartphones are not allowed.
    This is a stricter safety protocol than even for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (or TTIP) between the European Union and the United States: If members of the European Parliament want to access TTIP documents they can enter the reading room without anyone checking the contents of their pockets.

    The secret is a report of about 250 pages. Its title, in the jargon of the Commission, is “Impact Assessment.”
    It assesses the “socio-economic” impact of regulations related to a group of chemical pollutants. Known as endocrine disruptors, these chemicals are capable of interfering with the hormones of animal species, including humans, and are believed to be the cause of many serious diseases: hormone-dependent cancers, infertility, obesity, diabetes, neurobehavioral disorders.
    They are found in a multitude of consumer items, cosmetics, pesticides and plastics such as bisphenol A (or BPA). Whole sectors of industry will be affected by regulation of these chemicals in the medium term. Billions of euros are at stake.

    The prospect of restrictions, perhaps even bans, raises serious worries among manufacturers. The pesticide industry has never hidden its hostility to the European regulation on “plant protection products,” from which originates a decision-making process with twists and turns worthy of a TV series.

    Adopted by the European Parliament in 2009, the text provided for special treatment of pesticides: those recognized as endocrine disruptors would not be allowed on the market. But they must be able to be recognized.

    In concrete terms, the job was to lay down criteria to identify these substances. Without the criteria, the law cannot be implemented.The Commission was therefore obliged to find a way to distinguish endocrine disruptors from other chemicals. In concrete terms, its job was to lay down criteria to identify these substances. Without the criteria, the law cannot be implemented.SNIP

    Read the full article here

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