As regulators in the European Union continue to implement criteria for the identification of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in the context of biocides and pesticides laws, the Endocrine Society is staying engaged to provide advice and guidance to policymakers on this important subject. On May 24, Pavel Poc, Member of the European Parliament, hosted a briefing at the European Parliament about EDC priorities and next steps for policymakers. Barbara Demeneix, PhD, DSc, BSc was invited to speak at the briefing as a representative of the Endocrine Society.
During her presentation, Prof. Demeneix described the scientific evidence that links EDCs to adverse health outcomes such as obesity, diabetes, reproductive disorders, cancer, and neurodevelopmental disorders, and discussed the unique characteristics of EDCs that challenge conventional regulatory approaches. The variety of hormonal pathways impacted by EDCs, and the breadth of potential sources beyond pesticides and biocides calls for better public health protection and continued action on EDCs worldwide. She closed by sharing recommendations in the Endocrine Society’s updated Position Statement on EDCs in the European Union, specifically that a new EU Strategy on EDCs is required, and more research is needed to develop additional public health protections.
The term of the European Commission and Parliament is set to expire this summer, so the briefing offered a chance to assess progress made by the EU and whether current actions are sufficient to address the significant public health challenge from EDCs. Although progress has been made on the implementation of the criteria, current legislative and regulatory policies fall far short of what the Endocrine Society views as appropriate action to reduce public exposure to EDCs and minimize serious harms due to EDCs. We will continue to engage EU institutions in the coming years to improve and expand upon current EDC priorities to protect public health.
You can see the Society’s revised position statement on EDCs in the European Union and additional information about EDCs at endocrine.org/edc.